Triad working on plan for school reopening


Although the academic year is over, Triad officials are already working to prepare for the next.
Superintendent Vickie Hoffman discussed preparations for the start of the 2021 academic year during Thursday’s Board of Education meeting, which was conducted virtually.
Hoffman said school officials created the first plan “for a semi-normal” return to school in the fall.
She said it was submitted to the Champaign County Health Commissioner Thursday.
Since it is a preliminary plan, Hoffman did not speak about it in detail but said it touches on everything from “recess to lunch to busing” students to and from school.
She said the district is waiting for feedback from the health commissioner and expects a back-and-forth process of refining the plans.
Once officials receive feedback, Hoffman said staff will be divided into small groups. She said she will meet with the groups for discussion, to answer questions and provide training for carrying out the plans.
Additionally, she said there will be a group of students’ parents and caregivers she meets with to hear their feedback.
She did note that, as of now, students will not be required to wear face masks while at school.
“It’s just a recommendation of masks right now,” she said.
In other business:
– Hoffman said work on the new athletic facility is going smoothly.
She said topsoil is currently on the football field and grass seed would be laid Thursday or Friday. The irrigation system is in place and the grass will be watered two to three times a day.
The track will be completed soon, but Hoffman said only the stone base is in place as of now.
She said she does not want any heavy machinery to drive over the completed track and potentially damage it, so the final track will be installed after the scoreboard is placed during the first week of July.
The existing field house building, which is being renovated as a part of the project, has a new, black and red metal roof in place.
Hoffman said drywall will be installed next week.
The new, second field house will be installed from a pre-fabricated structure. She said it will be delivered Tuesday and likely constructed on site by the end of next week.
“There’s lots of exciting things happening out there,” Hoffman said. “Every day you just never know what you’re going to see.”
She said completion of the project is on schedule, with grass seed the only thing slightly behind.
“We’re on target, we’re on track, the only thing that’s a little off is our grass being planted,” she added.
Hoffman said workers were unable to lay the grass seed because they had to wait for a rainy spell to end before they could complete the irrigation.
She said there will be a ribbon cutting ceremony once the facility is finished. It may be held prior to the first home football game, depending on the project’s end date.
– The board approved a five-year service agreement with Hometown Tickets at no cost to the district.
Hoffman said this will allow individuals to purchase tickets for sporting events online and simply scan the ticket on their phone at the gate.
Paper tickets will still be at the gate, Hoffman added.

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