Students may have been out of school for the week following Superstorm Sandy, but some employees of the Butler school district were assessing storm damage and working to get the district's technological infrastructure up and running.
Superintendent of Schools Mario Cardinale said Thursday the district had a fiber-break that grounded the system as a result of the storm. Cardinale said the issue was resolved within a few days thanks to the efforts of Butler Borough officials, particularly Business Administrator Jim Lampmann.
"Lampmann and the borough were more than helpful in addressing that," Cardinale said.
Cardinale said without the help of the borough, the school district may still have been experiencing delays with its network still. At the same time, the district is working on installing wireless Internet access throughout Butler public schools. While the installation has not yet been completed, Cardinale said the project is coming along.
"We're very close to being wireless in all three buildings," he said.
Other than the fiber-break, Cardinale said the district was mostly unphased by the storm.
"Sandy damage was very minimal to all of our schools," he said.
Cardinale said there was no flooding to any of the schools although there was some small damage done to a fence at the Richard Butler School.
"It could have been much, much worse," he said.
Planning for Future Upgrades
As the district continues to assess storm damage, planning discussions are also underway for upgrades and repair projects to district facilities and fields. Cardinale said at Thursday's Butler Board of Education meeting that the district is planning to hire a vendor for re-seeding at the Aaron Decker School field. While seeding will not completely help repair the condition of the field, Cardinale said he is aware of what is needed in the future.
"It takes a total regrade," he said.
The school district is still in discussions about interior upgrades as well, particularly to the Butler High School auditorium. Last month, Cardinale said renovations to the auditorium would likely not be funded this year, but that he wanted planning for the project to continue so that when funding was available, the district would be ready.
Board Member Heather Grecco told the board about a meeting on the project, and others, by the joint school district and board of education community committee. She said architects also attended the meeting.
"We had a very lengthy discussion with them and they brought their plans for the upgrades," she said.
Those plans include adding additional seats to the auditorium, extending the stage out and adding new carpeting to the room.
Other upgrades include renovations to the band room, which include new cabinets and mounting of acoustic panels.