Friday, May 12, 2000
CSC debates best time to paint gym -- impact is on RecCom programs
In a rare occurrence, members of the Carlisle School Committee disagreed about whether to proceed with plans to paint the Corey gym this summer. Painting the gym, along with replacing acoustic tiles and refinishing the floor, would make the gym unavailable to the recreation commission programs for the entire summer. Postponing some of the work until next summer would allow the RecCom to use the gym for part of each summer. After much discussion, the school committee postponed their decision until their next meeting.
The school had been planning to paint the gym this summer and had solicited bids for the job. Seven bids ranging from $11,800 to $23,035 were received. Business manager Eileen Riley recommended accepting the low bid. At the brief meeting before Town Meeting on May 2, the three members initially in attendance, Harry Crowther, Suzanne Whitney Smith and Paul Morrison, agreed to accept the low bid.
Cindy Nock, arriving late, brought up the issue of the RecCom's needs. Usually, the gym is available for the full six weeks of the summer program for basketball and floor hockey and for rainy-day activities. Nock thought that a compromise allowing the RecCom use of the gym for the first two or three weeks would be reasonable. Nock said that she was also concerned that there might be more work planned than could be completed in one summer. She thought that any slippage in the schedule could impact the start of school. She suggested postponing the painting until next year.
Superintendent Davida Fox-Melanson explained that the gym has not been painted in 13 years. She was concerned that the maintenance has already been scheduled and that further discussion could impact that schedule. Riley pointed out that it was preferable to do work like painting and floor refinishing in the early part of the summer, to leave plenty of time for any fumes to dissipate before the start of school. Fox-Melanson added that if all the work were done this year, the gym would be available all summer next year.
Riley suggested that the RecCom could use the cafeteria and some classrooms in the Wilkins Building on rainy days. This would still not provide space for basketball, Nock pointed out.
After further discussion, with time running out before the group needed to adjourn to Town Meeting, the school committee was split in their vote, two to two, on whether the painting should be done this summer. Nock and Crowther wanted to postpone the work so that summer programs could use the gym for part of each summer. Whitney Smith and Morrison wanted to proceed with the painting this year. (Chair David Dockterman was not present to cast a deciding vote.) Since the group was tied, they voted to table the motion, reconsider their vote and discuss it again at their next meeting on May 16.
© 2000 The Carlisle Mosquito