Pelham Examiner

Pelham Examiner

Pelham Examiner

Pelham school board continues to review Village of Pelham request to build stormwater reservoirs under Julianne’s Playground

From left, Board Vice President Ian Rowe, President Dr. Michael Owen-Michaane and Superintendent Dr. Cheryl Champ.

The Pelham Board of Education continues to review the Village of Pelham’s request to build underground water reservoirs and above ground pumps at Julianne’s Playground, including exploring legal issues that have arisen.

“I want to let everyone know we are considering” the proposal, said Board President Dr. Michael Owen-Michaane during trustees’ meeting Wednesday. “We’ve gone through review with our architect, sought council from out attorney. We’ve done the appraisal, title search, and we are committed to doing the right thing for Julianne’s Playground for the Pelham school district and for the community. Our priorities are to help in any way we can with the water situation, to preserve Julianne’s Playground, which we have heard loud and clear is a cherished place, minimize the impact of any kind of pumps and protect the assets and optionality for the school district.”

In Village of Pelham Mayor Chance Mullen’s presentation, “there were some legal issues that came up, so we’ve continued to get counsel specifically on that front,” said Board Vice President Ian Rowe.

At the Jan. 17 school board meeting, Mullen reviewed the village’s proposed $39 million project designed to improve storm drainage in north Pelham and on and around Highbrook Avenue to reduce flooding. A key component of the project is the storage system that would be built under the blacktop and tennis courts at Julianne’s Playground along with above ground diesel pumps.

Alan Daly, a professor at the University of California in San Diego who works for the Core Collaborative, presented to the board the staff climate survey results from the fall. There were two sections in the survey. The first consisted of questions that were geared toward understanding the strength of the “sense of belonging” that Pelham faculty feel, and the second was aimed at understanding their well being and satisfaction in the district. A total of 199 instructional staff members and 34 non-instructional employees took part.

On the first section, instructional staff K-5 reported an average sense of belonging of around 4.8 (the survey scale was 1 to 6, ranging from strongly disagree to strongly agree) and instructional staff 6-12 came in at 4.9. Non-instructional staff K-5 had an average score of 4.9 and non-instructional staff 6-12 4.5.

In the well being and satisfaction category, the following average ratings were reported by Daly:

  • Instructional staff K-5: 5
  • Instructional staff: 6-12:  a little over 5
  • Non-instructional staff K-5: 5
  • Non-instructional staff 6-12: 4.9.

The next board of education meeting will take place Feb. 28 at 7 p.m. in the middle school library.

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Annika Halvorson, Staff Reporter
Annika is a junior at Pelham Memorial High School. She is a senator in the student association and a volleyball player. She is the president of the PMHS Chemistry Club, and is interested in coding and computer science. She enjoyed writing for a journalism fellowship at the start of highschool and looks forward to writing with the Pelham Examiner!

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