Expanding and renovating Clermont Elementary School and Swift Middle School will cost less than Solanco School District officials estimated.
The work in the two schools will cost $16.5 million, well under the estimate of $17.3 million the district's architect anticipated.
"We were very pleased that we had the number of offers we did. It was a nice selection," said Solanco School District business manager Sandy Tucker.
Sixth graders face big changes when they move up from elementary schools, but teachers and administrators are ready to help kids, and their parents, make the transition.
That's the message Swift Middle School assistant principal John Dolan brought to incoming sixth graders and their parents during orientation sessions last week.
The world Solanco officials began planning for seven years ago is not the world the district faces today.
Those plans included making Smith Middle School large enough to accommodate all the district's middle school students. Clermont Elementary School could then be expanded into the former Swift Middle School.
The faculty of Swift Middle School has announced the names of students earning honor roll distinction for the first marking period of the 2014-15 school year.
Organizers are hoping to bag their fundraising goal for Swift Middle School.
"We would like to raise $12,000 but even $9,000 would be nice," teacher Theresa Sosko said last week.
Sosko and fellow teachers Alison McPherson and Melissa Tucker are helping guide the project which will bring in money to help fund school activities.
Even before they came back to class on Monday, many of Solanco's students had been working on their first assignments for the new school year.
Those students were given a summer reading assignment in June and they were handed the books before the previous school year ended. Lessons for the first several weeks of the new school year will be based on the books the students read over the summer.
With just a few days until the new school year begins, parents and students in Solanco are getting ready.
Keith Kaufman, spokesman for the school district, said that parents don't need to worry about supplies.
"The district does not require parents to buy supplies. The district provides all items," said Kaufman.
But both Swift and Smith middle schools sent a list of "suggested" items home with students during sixth grade orientation.
By last Friday afternoon, drivers entering Robert Fulton Highway (Rt. 222) from Swift Rd. had a better chance of avoiding an accident.
Fulton Township's crew, assisted by workers from Little Britain Township and excavator Andrew Jackson, worked throughout last week to make the intersection less dangerous.
The crews used loaders, dump trucks, and a grader to remove an embankment that blocked the view of drivers trying to pull out on Rt. 222.
Not all of the school district's construction projects will be finished by the time Solanco students start the school year on Monday, August 25.
But the major work will be done and the remaining projects won't interfere with the operation of the schools, said Dr. Timothy Shrom, the district's business manager.
The faculty of Swift Middle School has named the following students to the fourth quarter honor roll.
SMITH MIDDLE SCHOOL
Abigail Nelson and Sophie Plechner earned multiple awards at George A. Smith Middle School's end of year ceremonies.
Nelson and Plechner received the Outstanding Student Award and the L.E.A.D. III Award. Plechner also earned the Principal's Leadership Award, the English Award, and the Science Award. Nelson also won the Technology Education Award and the Soroptimist Club Award.
The students were not expected to sculpt what they see.
Instead, they were to work from abstract works of expressionist artists.
"I explained that what those artists see is not what everyone sees in reality," Swift Middle School art teacher Stephanie Deininger said recently. "The work was supposed to be surrealist and dream-like. It's not supposed to be realistic."
For the sixth graders, that meant coming up with paper and cardboard sculptures that can be used as wall hangings. The eighth graders worked with papier maché formed over wire and then painted to create free-standing sculptures.
Tristan Murry was looking for Prisoner B 3078 on Thursday morning, May 22, but there weren't any in stock at the Swift Middle School Book Fair.
The fair will be getting more copies on Friday, reading specialist Alison McPherson told him. "You can pay for the book now and we'll hold it for you," she told Murry.
Murry was looking forward to the nonfiction work.
"It's a true story about the Holocaust," he said. "He was one of the people who survived." The book's title refers to the number tattooed on the prisoner's arm, he added.
He prefers an eReader because he can keep more books on it.
"And it doesn't get heavy if it's a long book," he explained.
They haven't built the scenery.
They aren't rehearsing their roles.
But without the promotions crew, Swift Middle School's students will be playing to an empty house when they stage The Revenge of the Pigs later this month.
They have been preparing press packets, meeting with reporters, and will begin creating posters to fill the seats for the play's two performances.
The faculty of Swift Middle School has announced the names of students earning honor roll distinction for the second marking period of the 2013-14 school year.
Earning highest honors in the eighth grade were: Jacob B Akerley, Morgan Armstrong, Jack Boomsma, Jada Brown, Aaron Constein, Shiloh Dale, Victoria Delp, Lydia Fetterman, Stephanie Golden, Alexis Jackson, Kyle Johnson, Halie Larsen, Emily Mellinger, Madison Moatts, Xiao Moore, Braden Redcay, Maurissa Roslan, Daniel Spilker, Alyssa Stauffer, Sarah Sweda, Lauren Swisher, Marlena Tatman, Miranda Waldvogel, and Patrick Workman.