WINFIELD, W.Va. — Students at Winfield Middle School won’t have to endure another winter in portable classrooms. Of course, that depends on construction of the new school building staying on schedule.
“Any time you’re building on the same site and trying to have school at the same time, there’s got to be a lot of flexibility,” Putnam County Schools Superintendent Chuck Hatfield said.
The new school building is going up in front of the existing building, which will eventually be demolished, so construction has to be carefully orchestrated in phases. A nearly complete three-story classroom wing sits on the far right of the school site along W.Va. 34, and to the far left of the site of a new kitchen has already been constructed. Yet to be built is the central portion of the building that will house the library, science labs and administrative offices. Before that can be completed, parts of the old building have to be demolished. Hatfield told the school board Monday night the plan is for the entire school to move into the new classroom wing over winter break. Two-thirds of the students at Winfield Middle are currently in portable classrooms on the back lot behind the old school building. The Winfield Middle project was part of the 2009 voter-approved bond sale. It was the only project in that group that also got funding from the state school building authority because it met the authority’s student population guidelines. It’s one of the most dire facility needs in the county. Hatfield also told the board that construction has begun on an addition and complete renovation of Winfield Elementary School and a six-classroom classroom addition at Conner Street Elementary School. When those projects are complete, the county will have eliminated all of its portable classrooms. The Putnam County board of education meets at 7 p.m. the first and third Monday of each month. The next meeting has been moved to the fourth Monday, Nov. 26, because of a scheduled school break for Thanksgiving.