The Board of Education met on Tuesday, Nov. 8 in the Superintendent’s Conference Room at Port Chester Middle School to familiarize themselves with the Fuller and D’Angelo P.C, Architects and Planners concepts before the Bond Advisory Committee gives them their final recommendation. Ray Renda, superintendent of buildings and grounds, was also present.
Casey Watts|Westmore News
The Board of Education met on Tuesday, Nov. 8 in the Superintendent’s Conference Room at Port Chester Middle School to familiarize themselves with the Fuller and D’Angelo P.C, Architects and Planners concepts before the Bond Advisory Committee gives them their final recommendation. Ray Renda, superintendent of buildings and grounds, was also present. Casey Watts|Westmore News

The Port Chester Board of Education met with Fuller and D’Angelo P.C, Architects and Planners on Tuesday, Nov. 8 to familiarize themselves with the plans the Bond Advisory Committee (BAC) voted on before the board receives the BAC’s final recommendation.

They board did not discuss any possibility of their approving or rejecting the BAC’s plans and did not make any motion to change the concept drawings.

The Board of Education offered their praise to the BAC for all of the work they’ve done over the last six weeks.

“I have a lot of respect for the committee,” Board President Jim Dreves said. “They worked extremely hard, were professional and listened to all sides.”

Some comments were thrown around during the meeting such as that Carolee Brakewood was happy to see King Street School and John F. Kennedy Magnet School’s lower location could get independent gym and cafeteria spaces if the board approved the bond and the public passed the referendum.

Bob Johnson commented on how he hears about the overcrowding in the high school from his son.

“We live it every day,” he said.

The board all seemed impressed with the BAC’s and the architects’ plan at King Street School and how it allowed for future construction if the Early Learning Center closed down or if the space were needed in the future. Potentially, there could be a two-story addition that could create about 26 new classrooms added to the location in the future due to the design being put forth by the BAC.

Other comments were a bit too forward thinking. Anne Capeci wanted to try and cut the cost of the project by only renovating the existing Port Chester High School gymnasium, suggesting they re-charge the committee to slim down the project if it isn’t to their liking and saying that the board should get into a mindset about the project and the cost, but Dreves had to pull her back and remind her that “it’s too early to discuss something we haven’t even seen.”

Brakewood also wondered why the BAC had their hearts set on gym spaces and plans on asking them if they do not address it in their final recommendation.

Architect Frank DiFato pointed out to his colleague Joe Fuller that the Board of Education’s original charge to the BAC was for them to create a competition gym in the high school instead of just remodeling the existing space.

“Let’s hear it from their perspective before we get into any mindset,” Dreves said in regards to the questions about the BAC’s gymnasium decisions.

The Board of Education believes they will be hearing the BAC’s final recommendation on Nov. 15 during the school board meeting at Thomas A. Edison Elementary School at 7 p.m.