Contract with private cleaning company approved
In a move that , Northville’s school board unanimously approved Tuesday night a contract to privatize the district’s custodial services.
In September, the board voted to privatize with Grand Rapids Building Services (GRBS.) The move drew criticism from some parents, community members and a group of custodians at that meeting. The board has maintained that the change was necessary to save the district money necessary to divert money to classroom teaching.
Superintendent Mary Kay Gallagher told the board that GRBS has been through the schools over the past week and has developed a plan, which she called “impressive.”
The , which is when the board voted for the layoffs to take effect.
Gallagher further told the board that, as they have expected, the number of custodian absences has increased as their final days with the district near.
Bid for new artificial turf approved
The board also approved a contract with Pontiac-based George W. Auch Co. to oversee construction of artificial turf at the Eight Mile athletic facility.
Gallagher explained that the funding would come from two sources: the Northville Education Foundation (NEF) and dollars from the district's .
The company selected was one of two which was vying for the job. It was not the company with the lowest bid. Board member Joe Hige explained that the artificial turf study committee, which reviewed the bids, felt that they were getting greater expertise and oversight for their dollars with Auch.
According to district documents, the total cost would be $169,060.
"The committee generally believed that the on-site construction supervision and the inclusion of architectural support to provide a master plan for the Eight Mile Stadium site justified Auch’s increased bid," the document reads.
The other bid, from McCarthy & Smith, Inc., would have cost $90,170.
Hige said that the artificial turf phase is one of a few big changes planned for the high school's stadium area. Other changes will include lighting improvements, changes to the press box, concessions, restrooms, and upgrades to fencing, sidewalks and such.
Board president Joan Wadsworth thanked the NEF for raising the funds.
The agreement will now be reviewed by the NEF and Auch.