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School Board Discusses Countywide Reopening, HMS Drainage Pipe Issues

Cheatham County parents are receiving a survey in their email from the school district regarding the upcoming 2020-2021 school year. Questions on the survey include asking parents whether they plan on sending their children to school or will be keeping them home for virtual teaching online. The survey is all part of the school district’s preparations for students’ return to the classroom, which is scheduled for Aug. 10.

You can learn more about the survey and the school district’s reopening plans here:

Dr. Cathy Beck, Director of Schools, presented the three models the school district has prepared as part of its reopening plan, during a work session on June 25. The models, which are based on countywide infection rates, include a traditional classroom setting with in-person student and staff attendance with State Health Department safety guidelines such as masks and cleaning protocols and other measures; a hybrid setting with half of students attending in person on Monday and Tuesday and the other half attending on Thursday and Friday with a deep cleaning day on Wednesday; or, a completely online class setting with students learning via the internet. The school system is currently working under the traditional model, based on current COVID-19 infection rates.

In other business at the work session, engineers presented information about a drainage pipe at Harpeth Middle which is rotting away and needs replacement. The recommendation from engineers was that the upper portion of the pipe should be replaced with a concrete pipe within the next year, due to erosion concerns. Board members planned to discuss the matter further, including possible funding for the replacement, which was estimated by engineers at over $100,000.

A project to install more cost-efficient lights at the district buildings is wrapping up, and the project has led to making more schools more energy-efficient as well, according to Eddie Potts of Industrial Electrical Services. Potts’ analysis of energy use found schools such as Cheatham County Central High and Cheatham Middle were more efficient while smaller schools such as Pleasant View Elementary were still not as efficient, and that further analysis of heating and cooling systems would help in this area.

Board members also discussed the storage building behind the Tucker Empson Building, which is currently vacant but expected to be renovated in the coming months for the Cheatham County Sheriff’s Office. Members are looking at building a similar storage facility or adding onto the current central office building but have not made any decisions yet. An appraisal will be done on the storage building to determine its value before any action will be taken.

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