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Progress on schedule at NCSD

Summer upgrades are nearing completion

Newton Community School board members will be busy putting the finishing touches on the 2017-18 school year at their meeting Monday night. Progress is moving swiftly on several projects, and teachers and administrators are excited to welcome students back to class when the school year begins on Aug. 24.

Numerous construction projects are nearing completion, with many already completed. Asbestos abatement work at Berg Middle School has been completed, with most of the carpet removed from the building. Work at Berg was done in hopes of paving the way for the new building, and including stripping the asbestos based mastic from the original tiles and removing carpet. This process will allow the school to demolish the building as soon as the new facility is completed.

Phase one is completed, and school administrators said they expect to start a second phase of asbestos abatement during the summer of 2018.

Progress is also moving along at the softball field, which is being constructed at a cost of $600,000. The project, which will include bleacher seating and a scoreboard is being constructed. The infield has been completed and is ready for the application of the infield, the foundations for the dugout and equipment room are being poured this week. Superintendent Bob Callaghan said he expects the project to be completed by Nov. 15.

“We’re on target and on track with this project,” Callaghan said.

At Newton High School the parking lot project is also in the final stages. Asphalt work has been completed and crews are working on striping the parking lot this week. Callaghan said the upgrades will transform the lot, which was badly in need of repair.

“The last time this parking lot had any work was 40 years ago,” Callaghan said.

The wooden bridges that students used to traverse to reach the building have been eliminated, curbing was added, and drainage issues were addressed as well. Callaghan said that workers started fresh, stripping the old parking lot all the way down to the base before laying 4 inches of fresh asphalt.

Technology upgrades are also happening across the district, with the installation of 20 new interactive projectors. Previously the district had installed an initial 20 projectors, with five going to each of the four elementary schools. Now, with each elementary receiving five more projectors Callaghan likened each one to the “magic wall” that television weather reporters use, and said their interactive ability is enhancing learning opportunities in the district.

“We’re excited for the kids to return, we’re ready to start another year,” Callaghan said.

Contact David Dolmage at 641-792-3121 ext. 6532 or

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