Shawnee looks at construction

SHAWNEE TOWNSHIP — The state of buildings was a major concern at Tuesday’s Shawnee school board meeting.

The evaluation of Shawnee school buildings revealed that Maplewood Intermediate School is leaking. There is an immediate need for the building to be repaired. The board approved around $61,000 to remediate the brickwork on the building to stop the leaking.

A second but not as urgent construction project is going on at Elmwood Elementary. A sidewalk is being constructed between Elmwood Elementary and the Shawnee Alliance Church. Students go to the church for LifeWise Academy, and it is also used as an emergency shelter if the school building would ever need to be evacuated. The sidewalk will eliminate some low-lying areas in the grass.

The Shawnee district’s buildings are aging. The newest building is 50 years old, with the oldest being built in 1926. SPH, an engineering and architectural firm, was contracted to devise a plan for Shawnee schools to improve through remodeling or replacement.

There are three plans for building revisions that have risen to the surface. A community forum is being planned for the latter part of October. Community input is wanted on the plans.

Once a plan has been selected, it must then be submitted to the Ohio School Facilities Commission for its approval. If the commission feels there is a more cost-effective plan, then that plan must be adopted. The timeline now would bring the approved plan to the board in March or April, and if the board decided that a levy of some sort was necessary, it would appear on the November 2023 ballot.

The rest of the meeting was standard for this time of year. There were a number of substitutes hired. A textbook was adopted. Superintendent Jude Meyer asked the transportation supervisor to attend the meeting to discuss some of the transportation issues, but the supervisor had to drive a bus taking students to an extracurricular event.

Reach Dean Brown at 567-242-0409

Dean Brown joined The Lima News in 2022 as a reporter. Prior to The Lima News, Brown was an English teacher in Allen County for 38 years, with stops at Perry, Shawnee, Spencerville and Heir Force Community School. So they figured he could throw a few sentences together about education and business in the area. An award-winning photographer, Brown likes watching old black and white movies, his dog, his wife and kids, and the four grandkids - not necessarily in that order. Reach him at [email protected] or 567-242-0409.