published Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Officials tour Cleveland High School to gauge its needs

  • photo
    Dr. Martin Ringstaff, Cleveland Schools director, at right talks with the city school board and staff during a tour of Cleveland High School. Others from left are Principal Autumn O'Bryan and board members Tom Cloud and Murl Dirksen.
    Photo by Randall Higgins.
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CLEVELAND, Tenn. — An inclining concrete floor and an empty stage make up the Betsy Vines Little Theater at Cleveland High School.

The facility’s aging seats were removed during the summer.

Members of the Cleveland Board of Education’s Site Committee and others toured the high school Wednesday, including a stop in the theater to discuss future renovations.

Principal Autumn O’Bryan said officials are seeking cost estimates for the work.

“We had some about a year and a half ago, and they were very lofty,” O’Bryan said.

The board members also discussed why and how water entered the school’s new Max Carroll Science Wing during two heavy rains in September.

A collapsed, corrugated drain pipe underground was part of the problem, board members were told. The problem was being corrected Wednesday at no cost to the school system, officials said.

“The line is totally collapsed,” said Gene Bishop, a construction adviser to the school system. “At this point we don’t know how far it’s going to go ... but there will be a correction.”

Some improperly installed material around the roof allowed rain to enter through the top-floor windows and that also will be corrected, the board was told.

Dr. Martin Ringstaff, schools director, said architect Brian Templeton with the Upland Design Group has been meeting with contractors to get the corrections done.

“I’m impressed with his work,” Ringstaff said. “I think he is on top of it.”

With the opening of the science wing, the old science classroom space was available this year for other uses, including the art department, family science classes and a resource center for teachers.

“One thing the science wing did for Cleveland High School is create room for growth,” Ringstaff said.

about Randall Higgins...

Randall Higgins covers news in Cleveland, Tenn., for the Times Free Press. He started work with the Chattanooga Times in 1977 and joined the staff of the Chattanooga Times Free Press when the Free Press and Times merged in 1999. Randall has covered Southeast Tennessee, Northwest Georgia and Alabama. He now covers Cleveland and Bradley County and the neighboring region. Randall is a Cleveland native. He has bachelor’s degree from Tennessee Technological University. His awards ...

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