School Board Approves Maximum Cost to Rebuild Marion Elementary


CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - As a new school year begins in the Chambersburg Area School District (CASD), Marion Elementary closed its doors this year with the plans of expansion.

During Wednesday night's school board meeting, the district approved a resolution setting a maximum of $8.3 million dollars for the project that would rebuild Marion, making it a two deep school and adding room for nearly 150 more students.

The district will solicit bids for the leveling of the building. But construction wont happen anytime soon.

“We'll establish what the cost of the program is expected to be based on estimates - that's several months before we go into bidding.  After that part we'll go into the design process, actually have architecture designs that show what will the building look like where will the classrooms be,” said Steven Dart, CASD Business Manager.

After months of discussion, plans to rebuild Marion Elementary School continue to move forward, but some board members are still concerned with the $8 million dollar price tag.  

“So anything that comes along the line to deal with Marion, my vote will always be a no,” said Joan Smith, CASD School Board Member.

School board member, Joan Smith, has raised concerns about the project from the start because of overcrowding and feasibility. She believes the funds could be spend elsewhere.

“We'll probably have to look at another $8 million somewhere down the line in the next couple of years to address our issues with the overcrowding in the schools and build another school,” said Smith.

For Superintendent Padask, a new Marion Elementary will be a fresh start for the district.

“In our community and in our schools we have to desegregate our schools and clearly three of our borough schools are socially, economically and to some extend segregated.  This is a chance to make this happen once the school is finished,” said Dr. Joe Padask, CASD Superintendent.

Currently, Marion Elementary School students and staff are attending New Franklin. School officials hope the new school is completed by August 2016.  

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