Monday, December 21, 2015

Bids Being Accepted to Tear Down Old Middle School

The Sallisaw School Board agreed last Monday to advertise for bids to demolish the old middle school.

School Superintendent Scott Farmer said tearing down the old school is just one option under consideration.

A plan to tear down the school, “is not finalized yet,” Farmer said. “We are just going through the bidding process.”

The call for bids is being advertised county-wide for two weeks, and bids are due by 10 a.m. Jan. 29 at the school administration office. For information on the bidding process contact Farmer at 918-775-5544. The bids received will be presented to the school board at their Feb. 8 meeting.

The school board originally offered the property for sale to the City of Sallisaw, but, “A purchase is not on the table at the moment,” Farmer said.

The old building itself covers a little over 40,000 square feet, Farmer said, and the property on which it sits is not much bigger. One problem with that site is a portion of it is in the flood plain.

Other portions of the old school, a band room and media center not in the flood plain, have been leased to the Sequoyah County Boys and Girls Club, which will occupy those buildings on Jan. 4. The cafeteria is also separate from the old building, and is being used by other groups, and the school system will continue to use the auditorium.

Farmer said it is hoped that one of two gymnasiums in the old building can be saved for use by the Boys and Girls Club. “In its current state it can’t be used because of the vandalism,” Farmer said. Vandalism has been an ongoing problem with the property.

If a gym can be saved, and the rest of the building removed, Farmer said it hoped the cleared property can be used to benefit the community and its youngsters. The property may perhaps be used as a park, for basketball goals, as a play area or for a splash pad.

Farmer concluded, “Our goal is to make sure we are responsible with the property. Our ultimate goal is to help the kids.”

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

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