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Cheektowaga-Sloan School District gets state approval for roof replacement at Roosevelt Elementary

A portion of the roof at Theodore Roosevelt Elementary School will be installed a year ahead of schedule after the Cheektowaga-Sloan School District received the green light from the state Education Department.

Replacing the 50-year-old main section of the roof wasn’t expected to begin until the summer of 2016 as part of a capital improvement project approved by voters last year.

Superintendent Andrea L. Galenski said the early start is a bonus. “Everybody – the community, the staff – can see that we’re moving on our plans, and they can see progress,” she said.

Fast-tracking the work will give district officials peace of mind after dealing with water damage at the high school from last November’s snowstorm.

Storm damage at the elementary school was minimal, but officials noted that they might not be as lucky with the roof during the next major storm.

Business Manager Wayne W. Drescher said at Monday’s School Board work session that early approval from the state wasn’t ensured, so the news was welcome. “If there was one project we wanted to push forward … it was the roof at Theodore Roosevelt,” he said. “We didn’t know if we could pull this off.”

The district published a notice in Monday’s Buffalo News seeking bids, and those bids will be opened June 2.

An in-house summer project is also in store at Woodrow Wilson Elementary along with bleacher renovations at John F. Kennedy High School.

Wheelchair lifts at Wilson will be replaced, bringing the school into compliance with ADA standards. Work is also planned in the school’s gym and stairways. Drescher said the summer work at Wilson is contingent on approval of the district budget May 19.

In addition, the district plans minor repairs, welding and a fresh coat of paint for the football field’s bleachers, which Drescher said have surface rust. The repairs are expected to cost about $50,000, he said, but doing the work this summer instead of two to three years from now will be much less expensive.

The district will hold a public hearing on the 2015-16 budget at 7 p.m. May 12 in the cafetorium at Roosevelt.