ROSSVILLE — Rossville-Alvin school officials are moving forward with plans to renovate the high school and move grade school operations there next school year.
Board members approved a resolution of intent to issue $1.15 million in bonds to help finance the repairs at a special meeting Monday.
The board still needs to vote on whether to sell the bonds. It will do that at a later date.
Superintendent Crystal Johnson said officials are still trying to determine the scope of the renovation project. However, it will include removing asbestos, installing a new heating and cooling system, replacing windows and flooring, repairing portions of the roof, and making technology upgrades.
"We would like to start renovations this spring and continue through the summer and early fall," Johnson said. "That's our ultimate goal."
Rossville-Alvin High School was deactivated in May 2006. Since then, freshmen through seniors have attended either Bismarck-Henning or Hoopeston Area high schools under a deactivation agreement.
After much study, the board decided last fall that reactivating the high school wasn't feasible. Officials then began discussing moving grade school operations to the high school building — which sits directly across Chicago Street, also Illinois 1 — to improve the safety of students and save money, among other reasons.
The move would mean that students wouldn't have to cross the busy highway to go to the high school building to eat meals in the cafeteria or use a computer lab or the gym.
It also would mean the small district wouldn't have to make costly repairs at both buildings. Officials have said that both of the schools' boilers are old and problematic, and the grade school's is older and doesn't function as well as the high school's.
In addition, officials are running out of space at the grade school, and that building isn't equipped to handle newer technology that students need. The high school has much more space as well as a large parking lot.