Streetsboro -- A new security system at the entrance of Streetsboro Middle School and plans for a new security entrance at Streetsboro High School were among the improvements on display Aug. 15 at the Board of Education's annual tour of the district's school buildings.
School Board members, traveling in cars, drove to each building in the district and were shown various building improvements by each respective principal.
At Streetsboro Middle School, two small monitors with video screens about 3 inches by 2 inches rested on a desk in the main office. They can be used to identify visitors outside the front and back doors.
"We have total control of who comes into the building," said Streetsboro Middle School Principal Steve Hatch, adding that the system also provides a recording of who comes to the door.
The system cost about $3,400, according to Treasurer Cathy Rouse.
In the computer lab, about two dozen new computers were set up. Each had a monitor about 12 inches by 6 inches. According to Rouse, the lab cost about $16,000.
"This will help us with our online testing," Hatch said. "Before, the monitors were so big that the teachers couldn't always see the students."
Hatch pointed out the room that houses the school's Title I tutoring program.
"We identify students who struggle with reading or math and provide intervention," he said. "These sub groups have made improvements."
Hatch showed visitors the cafeteria in which two horizontal windows had been uncovered to allow in more natural light. Hatch said he believes the window was covered up around 15 or 20 years ago by a board or some similar material, and he doesn't know why. The glass was replaced and the window is letting in light to the cafeteria for the first time in many years.
At Henry Defer Intermediate School, Principal Bill Basel showed School Board members a new public announcement system.
"It was bad before," Superintendent Michael Daulbaugh said.
The improved PA system, which cost about $12,000 and was paid for by permanent improvement funds, will also allow visitors to hear better in the Henry Defer Intermediate School cafeteria, where School Board meetings take place, according to Steve Cain, the district's technology director.
"There will be a better sound system in the cafeteria," Daulbaugh said.
At Streetsboro High School, Principal Eric Rauschkolb talked about how the new security entrance will look when it is completed in about four weeks. A second set of doors will be installed at the front entrance to create "an outer area" with security cameras.
"It will make our building much more secure," said Rauschkolb, adding that similar security systems are in place at the middle school and Campus.
The system cost about $12,800, according to Rouse.
The rear door at the high school is no longer always open, which also should increase security, he said.
The attendance office was moved from the second floor to the first floor, while the nurse's office will remain on the second floor.
In the cafeteria, new tables that fold up make it seem like the area is less crowded, he said.
The STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) lab has been upgraded with "the most powerful computers in the district," Cain said.
At the high school football field, a thick, grass surface "looks like a carpet," Daulbaugh said.
"Two years ago, this was dirt and mud -- a mess," Athletic Director Randy Tevepaugh said. "The lights make it really look good. It's a great field, and the grass will get greener."
At Campus Elementary School, Principal Kristen Cottrell showed off the cafeteria in which four horizontal windows had been uncovered to bring in more natural light.
Cottrell displayed a set of "Brag Tags" that students can earn for academic achievement and improvement, appropriate school behavior and good character. Cottrell also described the school's summer reading program.
At Wait Primary School, Principal Amy Cruse said one of the goals is to continue to develop the preschool program, which integrates students with disabilities and regular students. Cruse said the school is approaching its maximum 32 preschool students in the morning and another 32 preschool students in the afternoon.
Cruse said the computers in the computer lab would possess increased band width for better reception as students prepare for the mandated third-grade reading guarantee.
According to the Ohio Department of Education's website, the state's third grade reading guarantee says that starting with students entering third grade in 2013-14, schools cannot promote to fourth grade students who score below a certain level on the state reading test. That level is slightly below the actual passing score on the state reading test, the Ohio Achievement Assessment.
"The computer lab has the tools to help us achieve better scores," Cruse said.
At the Board of Education Office, Daulbaugh showed visitors how furniture and printers had been moved to different positions in the building to create more office space. He credited Tevepaugh, Cain and Dave Clark, a building and grounds employee, for helping to make it happen.
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