Plans underway for move into new Baldwin, Denman schools

Darin Prost, an architect with Poepping, Stone, Bach and Associates, shows off large windows in a classroom at Quincy’s Sarah Atwater Denman Elementary School in March. Staff housed at the former Adams and Berrian schools will have an eight-week timeframe this summer to shift into Denman, which is expected to open in August. | H-W Photo/Jake Shane
Jake Shane 1|
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Apr. 16, 2019 8:40 am

QUINCY -- Quincy Public Schools Director of Maintenance Dane Barnes plans to follow last year's plans for this summer's moves tied to opening the new Thomas S. Baldwin and Sarah Atwater Denman elementary schools.

"I hope everything goes as well as it did last year," Barnes said. "Then we should be in pretty good shape."

Staff housed this school year at the former Adams and Berrian schools will shift to Denman, and staff housed at the former Ellington and Madison buildings will move to Baldwin.

"We'll move one school at a time, classroom by classroom, to the new building, as quick and efficient as we can," Barnes said. "We only have an eight-week window. Last year it was 11 weeks, so we're a little concerned. We'll hit it hard and would rather be done early rather than later."

Baldwin Principal Jim Sohn said staff will begin the packing process next week during professional learning community, or PLC, time on Wednesdays.

"We'll spend Wednesdays after Easter organizing by grade levels," he said. "We don't want to take everything out and start packing. We want to look at what can be boxed up now, what can we wait for. We're trying to organize."

Denman Principal Chrissy Cox will review the plan and timeline for the move this week with Barnes, with staff set to begin packing on May 1.

"Normally what we'll do is put a couple skids of boxes broken down in their buildings. The teachers go and pull as needed, and the board office is supplying tape and labels," Barnes said. "It's just a matter of getting them stacked in the right area and into the right room."

The K-5 custodians and a moving crew of approximately 20 mostly college-age students -- the same size as last year's crew -- will make the move then work in the school buildings.

"They'll assist with teachers to set rooms up, do any outside work, just getting ready for school," Barnes said.

QPS typically makes some moves every summer for teachers and for summer school, but last summer took things to a larger scale with moving 250 teachers into new classrooms and making preparations for 3,000 students to go to new/different schools.

This year, "it's less of a move, so we're pretty comfortable," Barnes said, but the district still will be "plenty busy" over the summer.

Preparations need to be made for summer school at Rooney Elementary School and Quincy High School, which will house high school and junior high students because of several health life safety projects planned at the junior high this summer, as well as typical summertime maintenance and custodial work.

"People always say to custodians and maintenance guys that it must be nice not to have to work over the summer. People don't understand we work year-round," Barnes said. "Some things we can't get done when school is in session, things we can't do around students. Summer is a big time. Even if we have the full 11 weeks in the summer, it goes by pretty quick."