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NY Mills School plans for new security system, football field lights

A more high-tech security system and new lights for the football field are among several projects on the docket for New York Mills School next year.

The school’s facility project plans for 2013-2014 were outlined by Superintendent Todd Cameron at a recent school board meeting.

Administrators plan to have a “safe schools” security system installed, with access controls at entrances and an updated intercom system, according to Cameron.

In an email to the Focus, Cameron explained that the new system will be a keyless entry system from Arvig. Each staff member will have a card that will act as both a key and identification badge. The system will also include an internal lockdown mechanism that controls the school’s three main entrances in the event of an emergency.

The current system is old enough that replacement parts are no longer available, said Cameron, adding: “Updating and having a current 21st century keyless management system is important for the safety and security of our families.”

The new system is expected to be up and running by Aug. 1. It will cost upwards of $40,000.

School board member Rachel Grieger said that, with that kind of investment, administrators would need to be sure to provide adequate training to staff to ensure the system was being used properly at all times.

New lights for the football field would cost an estimated $27,000 to put in place. Cameron said $12,500 of that has already been raised by the school, through fundraisers and donations.

The current lights are well over 40 years old, said Cameron, and they don’t cast enough light, or consistent enough light, across the whole field, providing less than optimal visibility during night games.

The new lights could go up as soon as this summer.

Other facility projects planned for next school year include:

-Entrance matting put in place throughout the building, at a cost of about $5,500.

-A new floor scrubber, which costs roughly $14,000.

-A $1,000 boiler treatment upgrade.

-Two new cameras for the school’s parking lot, $3,500.

-Upgrades to handheld radio communications, $1,500-1,700.

-A $5,000 roofing inspection.

-New score boards for the sports center (deferred to summer 2014).

-Redo of the sports center and high school gym floor (deferred to summer 2014).

Most of these projects will be paid for out of the school’s safe schools and deferred maintenance funds.

Marie Johnson

Marie Johnson joined the Perham Focus more than five years ago, and has since worn many hats as writer, editor and page designer. She lives in rural Frazee with her husband, Dan, their one-year-old son, Simon, and their yellow lab, Louisa. 

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