It’s the day before Thanksgiving and students are preparing to spend time away from Ferndale School buildings. Those buildings, as it turns out, have required emergency maintenance and repair work over the last week.
“We had two roof repairs going on this week – one at Vista Middle School and one at the CTE Building at the High School,” says Ferndale School District Maintenance Director Jamie Plenkovich. “There are not a lot of options when a roof starts leaking – you repair it or replace it – bottom line.”
Replacement is not an option right now says Assistant Superintendent for Business Services Mark Deebach. “We recently asked voters for a bond package that included critical maintenance projects like roof replacements. That bond failed. Given the failure of our bond, there is no new money coming in for these projects. Without new money, we will continue to patch the roofs until those short–term fixes are no longer feasible. When we start talking about replacing roofs – we have to make hard decisions about where we pull that money from.”
Plenkovich says those patches are not a good long-term plan as every emergency repair takes money from proactive maintenance. “We had a roofing crew out to patch the CTE roof. The patch did not work and we had to have them come back again this week. It is raining today and we are crossing our fingers that we do not have new wet spots in the CTE building.” The CTE building hosts computer labs, CAD labs, Ag science, video production and other programs.
As Plenkovich oversees the work being done to repair leaking roofs, he takes another call informing him that the boiler in the Ferndale High School Cafeteria is out. Maintenance staff have begun repair work. According to Plenkovich, steam pipes that power the boiler are encased in concrete underneath the cafeteria – if problems develop with those pipes – jackhammers will be required. Return pipes back to the boiler have been patched and repaired for years.
Winter is coming and the Ferndale School District sends many thanks to our talented Maintenance Team for their tireless efforts.