School plans approved

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The West Virginia Board of Education approved two amendments towards separate facility plans in Hampshire and Lincoln counties.

The board (WVBE) approved an amendment to the West Virginia Schools for the Deaf and the Blind (WVSDB) 2020 – 2030 Comprehensive Educational Facilities Plan. These projects are identified as needs for the remainder of the 2020-2030 CEFP and are pending the availability of resources.

In February, the historic Administration Building at the West Virginia Schools for the Deaf and Blind was destroyed in a fire. The plan includes the construction of a memorial in honor of the building.

The amendment includes a plan change in facilities for student housing, necessary demolition work, fire safety system improvements, elevator upgrades, project reprioritization, and the inclusion of other miscellaneous needs. WVBE said the changes will improve campus safety, the overall student experience and the operational efficiency of the school.

After review, it was found that Seaton Hall will no longer be considered for student housing. In its new proposed configuration, the residential wings are planned to be demolished, and the dining room and activity wing of the building will undergo a modernizing renovation, a release stated.

Keller Hall will become the permanent residence hall for all residential students with upgrades planned throughout the building. Interior and exterior spaces will be improved to enhance the student experience. Additionally, the Blue and Gold Building is planned to be renovated to augment the meeting and activity needs of the campus.

The other approved amendment was requested by the Lincoln County Board of Education to unify all Duvall Pre-K to 8 students into the central office facility until the new Duval/Midway school is constructed.

Currently, Duval Pre-K t0 2 students are located in portables at the old Duval site, grades 3 to 5 students are at Hamlin Pre-K to 8 and grades 6 to 8 students are at the central office facility.

According to the WVBE, the action enables Duval Pre-K to 8 to operate in a more traditional school environment and allows the county to provide the necessary student services and supervision more efficiently.