As the start of the 2014-15 school year nears, a tremendous amount of progress has been made at the schools through the short summer months. According to Superintendent Dwight Sanders, the work is still on schedule and on budget with the capital improvement projects.
"We have a very engaged community that is excited about the progress of our district," Sanders said. "I am so thankful for their support and feel blessed to have been a part of this district improvement."
The network infrastructure upgrade is now complete. The security improvements should be finished before the start of school. Replacement windows for the middle school and elementary school are installed. The weight room addition project should be complete soon. The concrete parking lot south of the building by the auditorium and the ag buildings will be poured and finished before school starts, although a few days may be necessary for curing. The lighting retrofit is completed. All classrooms should have operating air-conditioning before the start of school. The covered walkways for middle and elementary school bus riders are about 70 percent complete.
On the athletic side of the upgrades, the new football field turf installation is nearly complete, with "D" zones at the ends of the field and install some yard line numbers and hash marks yet to be done. The midfield logo for the field, Brad Friedrich's design, is permanently placed. The diamonds for the end zones have not been permanently placed. The rubber pellets for the field will be installed once the turf is completed. All of the bleachers are on site with home bleachers scheduled for completion by Aug. 15. Visitor's bleachers should be finished before the first home game Aug. 22. The concession stand work is well underway. The field lights are completely installed and ready for power. Once the roof is on the concession stand and the lighting panel installed, there will be field lights. The press box is on site and and will be attached to the back of the home bleachers. The 8 x 30 foot structure will have a six foot overhang on each end to keep video crews from each team out of the weather as they work.
A four foot black chain link fence will be placed around the track and a six foot fence around the entire athletic complex. The water line to the practice football field has been dug and run. A new 30 foot plus wide concrete slab will be poured for the new 10 x10 foot ticket booth and stadium entrance.
Generous donations have been pledged: one by the Quarterback Club - nearly $4,000 to provide two steel arches reading "Riley Field...Home of the Pintos" over the two new entryways; and the Booster Club for a new ice maker for the concession stand.