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The Osage Community School’s Board of Education members recently toured the construction areas at the middle school and high school, prior to their August board meeting.

Areas toured included the former high school office area, which has been turned into three special education classrooms, new high school gymnasium, high school/superintendent’s office and food service department.

During the tour, Superintendent Barb Schwamman said the building’s fire alarm system had been upgraded. Unlike the old system, which only provided a high shrill sound when activated, the new system provides a voice-over of a quieter alarm, which instructs students and staff in how to evacuate the building during testing or an actual emergency.

In the new gymnasium, new windows at the top of the facility allow filtered light to enter the space. The gym still needs the hardwood floor, painting, bleachers and air conditioning to be installed. If construction continues on schedule, it should be completed by mid-November, Schwamman said.

The new office area, which includes high school and superintendent’s office, located near the new east entrance, is nearing completion. “We could move out there, but we want it to be right and ready before we go,” said Schwamman. The new food service cooler and freezer is already operational and are being used. The new district board room is awaiting carpet.

While some areas are nearing completion, other areas have a few more weeks of construction. The new kitchen, school lunch and common’s area, main east entrance and outside brick laying continue to progress.

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In regards to the new kitchen and lunch room, Schwamman said, “I can’t put a date on it, but it’s getting closer. The move may be in late September.”

Schwamman said as progress continues school officials will keep students, parents and staff informed as changes occur.

During the meeting, approval was given for a one-year, $25,000 contract with Synergy, who supplies the with a certified Athletic Trainer for early morning workouts, and an Athletic Trainer will be present at all varsity athletic events. In addition, Synergy will reimburse the school $12,000 for an area in the Osage Campus, where they will be able to treat athletes for ongoing medical problems.

In previous years, this contract has been paid for by the Osage Booster Club.

“In the end, we are only paying out $13,000 for the service,” Schwamman said. Board member Laura Potter, who moved to accept the agreement, incorporated specific language in her motion requiring Synergy’s onsite personal have the required certification and licensing.

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