Last updated: July 18. 2013 10:58PM - 266 Views
Cris Ritchie

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HAZARD – The Perry County Board of Education on Friday accepted a bid for more than $4 million to begin work on an athletic complex adjacent to an ongoing school construction site in Hazard.

The complex will include a football field with artificial turf that will double as a playing surface for soccer teams, along with a practice and softball field and a field house. Athletic teams from both the new East Perry Elementary School and Perry Central High School will use the facilities.

The board unanimously approved a project application form for the construction in the amount of $4.4, with alternates approved for an additional cost of $139,000, bringing the total cost of the project to just over $4.5 million. The bid for the project was awarded to D.W. Wilburn, Inc., the same company currently working on the East Perry Elementary project along Highway 80 near the Daniel Boone Shopping Center. Officials say they expect both projects to be completed by the time the 2013 school year begins.

In other business, the board approved an agreement with Primary Care Centers of Eastern Kentucky to provide a physician’s assistant (PA) onsite at Perry Central High School for half a school day, two days per week during the upcoming semester.

Assistant Superintendent Johnny Wooton described the agreement as a pilot program, since it hasn’t been done in the Perry County School District before. It will work by allowing students to see the PA at the school, rather than leaving school for a clinic. Wooton said there is a potential for the program to slightly improve attendance, but he views it an opportunity to provide another service to students.

“I think it’s a good service just to start with to see how it’s going to work,” Wooton said.

Unlike a school nurse provided by the local health department, Wooton said if a student’s parent carries health insurance on the child, then seeing the PA at the school will work in much the same way as if the child was seen at a clinic. There will be a copay and the insurance billed for the visit. In the event that a student is covered by Medicaid or the Kentucky Children’s Health Insurance Program, known as KCHIP, there won’t be any copays.

Considering that care for some students would include a cost, Wooton said there will be a need for communication between the provider and the student, but that for the time being the program could provide a valuable service, and there will be no cost to the school or district.

In the event that the program doesn’t meet expectations, he added, the district has the option to end participation.

The board also voted to give approval to District Finance Officer Jody Maggard to solicit for two security systems for schools. The system will include cameras, and when installed will make eight schools in the districts where camera systems are in use.

“We’re making out to where eventually we will get to all the schools,” Maggard said. “So hopefully that will be something within the next three or four years we will be able to do.”

The board also heard from Glen Brashear, the district’s bonding agent, who presented a resolution for approval of a bond to fund the athletic complex at East Perry Elementary in the amount of $6,635,000. The board unanimously approved the first reading of that resolution.

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