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New roofs for Golden Valley, West Ranch planned as summer project 

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Roughly 20 years after the campuses were opened, West Ranch and Golden Valley high schools are set to get new roofs in time for the next school year. 

That project, along with a plan to discuss a SoCal Edison easement for the William S. Hart Union High School District transportation yard and a contract for a virtual opportunity for career technical education, were approved at last week’s governing board meeting. 

New roofs 

Set to cost more than $5.4 million, the new roofs are set to be put in place by the beginning of the next school year, according to Mike Otavka, director of facilities. 

Otavka added that 20 years is the typical life cycle of a roof. 

The total cost of the project includes two addendums worth approximately $240,000. The first of those is to replace the 10 skylights at the Golden Valley library. The other has a polyvinyl membrane being put on the roofs, meant to last longer, Otavka said, adding that there are cheaper options, but those would be more temporary. 

“It’s better to take it all off and then replace it, because the one thing that you can do by taking everything off is you can see whether there are any issues with rotting on the substrate,” Otavka said. 

The project is scheduled to be completed over the summer and is being handled by Eberhard, a Van Nuys-based manufacturing company. The Eberhard bid came in at more than $1.5 million less than the next-lowest bid. 

Funding for the project is set to come out of fund 40.3, known as the Special Reserve Fund for Capital Outlay Projects. 

There was no discussion among the board members on the topic. 

Transportation upgrade 

While not approving SoCal Edison to electrify the district’s transportation yard, the governing board did approve a resolution that signals an intent to hold a public hearing at a future meeting regarding the granting of an easement to the electric company. 

In October, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law a target of 2035 for the state to have all school districts have every newly purchased bus be emission-free. Newsom had previously in 2020 signed into law a target of 2045 for all medium and heavy-duty vehicles, such as trucks and buses, to be emission-free. 

Should SoCal Edison at some point be granted that easement, the electrical company would have the “right of way on the property to construct, use, maintain, operate, alter, add to, repair, replace, reconstruct, inspect and remove electrical supply systems solely for the purpose of providing electrical power to vehicle charging stations,” according to the agenda item. 

There was no discussion on the topic. 

Virtual CTE 

In an effort to provide as many avenues as possible for students to take part in career technical education, the governing board approved a two-year contract with Transfr for virtual simulation headsets. 

According to Carolyn Hoffman, director of career technical education, the headsets will be used by students participating in the summer English Learners Newcomer program and the CTE Summer Exploring Careers program. Once the new semester begins in the fall, junior high and high school students can use them by taking the CTE career experience course. 

“We are excited to really start this opportunity with Transfr and to be able to get the headsets out and provide opportunities for all students in a very safe environment,” Hoffman said at a previous board meeting. 

Each headset has a “coach” built into the software that can translate into each student’s native language. 

“It’s very interactive in the sense that students get a chance to practice their skills,” Hoffman said, “and then it does present itself with data for our teachers to be able to identify which skill sets the students are really showing an interest and an affinity for.” 

The two-year contract worth about $81,000 is set to be paid for through Strong Workforce Program funding. 

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