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Falcon Lane expansion among Blair Oaks agenda items

by Anna Campbell | November 9, 2022 at 4:04 a.m.

Several groups sought an eventual financial commitment from the Blair Oaks School Board on Tuesday.

The board heard a presentation on the potential expansion of Falcon Lane, which houses Blair Oaks schools. Paul Samson of Central Missouri Professional Services explained that the village of Wardsville had obtained $250,000 for the project. The street would be widened to three lanes from Route M to north of the high school, providing turning lanes to help with traffic flow. Currently, the projected budget is $700,000, meaning $450,000 is left to be funded.

Samson said the presentation was a chance to share the project with the board for them to start thinking about what kind of financial commitment it might be able to make. The construction contract for the project would need to be awarded by August 2024, and Samson said it could likely be finished in a summer.

Baseball coach Mike DeMilia also shared a presentation about turf at the baseball and softball complex. DeMilia said the state of the fields had fallen behind other districts, and he requested the board's consideration of turf installation, citing easier conditions for maintenance workers and less water usage. DeMilia said although a full turf field might be expensive, something needs to be done at the facility.

Board member John Weber said community fundraising might be an option to pay for the improvement.

The board also recognized employees Earl Prenger and Mike Schroer, who found and put out an after-hours fire in the agriculture classroom that was believed to have been started by spontaneous combustion. Middle School Principal Melinda Aholt said their actions prevented what could have been extensive damage.

During the reports portion, athletic director Clay Crouch recapped the successful athletic season so far, including a top-ranked football team headed into playoffs and a volleyball team that earned back-to-back state championships without dropping a set in this year's postseason play.

Board member Glenn Reynolds asked about the criteria for determining when the school closes for athletic events, as it did for the state volleyball championship last week. Members of the administration and the board said there are lots of variables considered, including the precedents set in previous years and the chance that staff and students may want to leave school to attend those events.

Randy Prenger, director of building and grounds, said he is ready to install the second batting cage at the baseball/softball complex. He said he is also looking at an upgrade to the middle school kitchen area.

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