Sunnyside School PTO: Update on Capital Projects Minutes

August 1, 2016


6:30 meeting called to order.


Present: Superintendent Dr. Clouet, Chairman of Board of Education Mark Holden


Members present: Anne Gaydos, Jennifer Roden, Lisa Robinson, Jessica Scerbo, Mary Pagliaro, Katie Dansereau, Katie Lawrence


  • Introductions around table made by Dr. Clouet, Mark Holden, Ann Gaydos, and the Sunnyside Executive Board


Mark Holden

  • Expressed his concern and stated he is upset that the roof was not completed this summer.  He holds the position that this is a priority and needs to be done.  Stated that Sunnyside is well-liked by the Board of Education, and that our PTO/Sunnyside parents continually show support and caring for our school.  Mark stated that this carries a lot of weight.  Nothing about this process is anti-Sunnyside.  The roof needs to be done properly.  Mark also stated how we should be proud at Sunnyside because our SBAC scores moved up 156 places in 2015 from 2014, and we should be receiving the results from 2016 soon.


Dr. Clouet

  • Shared his frustration.  He is not happy how this has turned out.  He believed that the roof was set, the bid was out and came back.  Dr. Clouet further explained the process of who is in charge of the bidding and the signing of contracts.  Each project has a building committee, Public Improvement Building Committee(PIBC) which the Board of Education is not a part of.  All of the bidding, and signing of the contract is through the PIBC.  The committee may ask the Board of Education questions, but not always, and they are separate from one another.  Everything was set, roofers asked about asbestos and testing was done.  Sunnyside has multiple roofs/different layers.  There has been some asbestos found in some, but not all, of the layers.  Slurry gypsum is one layer used on Sunnyside's roof which has asbestos in it.  This was common practice when placed.  In order to do the roof, it needs to be cracked open.  At this point the slurry gypsum has hardened, pieces can get into the air when it is cracked into, and that is what causes lawsuits and health issues.  Mystic Air is a company that was hired to do borings in some points of the roof, not the entire roof has asbestos.  To abate it, no kids/people are allowed to be in the building.

  • Dr. Clouet stated that he spoke with Mayor Lauretti this morning and Mayor Lauretti stated that the architect is feeling confident to do some minor abatement over the library because this is a newer section.  All the bidders have bid 3x on the roof.  This time, bidders know the extent of asbestos in this part and what needs to be abated. 

  • At this time, the Board of Education has ordered our furniture for the library with unused funds in the Board of Education account.  It is coming.  The furniture and new carpeting will be placed in the library once it is received.  It should be ready by Back to School night.  If the roof above the library is unable to be abated prior to the start of school it will continue to be patched until June.  The new furniture will still be set up and protected by the patch.  Mayor Lauretti has stated that he wants to act in "good faith."

  • Dr. Clouet brought up the rumor of this all being a ploy, and that there is intentions to close Sunnyside.  Per Dr. Clouet, the city does not have a lot of space in our elementary schools.  He wants to debunk the myth that there are not a lot of children that live in condos.  There were 268 children who lived in condos last year who attended public schools.  Per Dr. Clouet, there is no such thing as just closing a school.  Dr. Clouet further stated that we need Sunnyside, we need to have a school in this area.  Per Mark Holden, there is only 1 empty room in elementary schools.

  • Dr. Clouet stated that due to the lack of rain this summer, many roof companies are ahead of schedule.  There is a month left until the start of school.  This is why small portion of roof could be done over the library.  It will take 10 days, 2 weeks at most.  Doing the whole roof would be impossible.  Don't want to take the risk of not opening school on time.


Open Discussion

  • Question arose if the small portion of the roof was done prior to the start of school will this be enough time for the particles to be out of the air?  Per Dr. Clouet, an air quality test will be done so our children are safe.  He understands that our parents are worried about the asbestos.  Explained that asbestos is ok if it is not broken into.  The main issue health concern is particles floating in the air which will occur when it is broken into.  Mystic Air would do the air quality test once the small portion over the library is done. 

  • Last year perforations were put in the roof for mold, why was it not tested for asbestos or why did it now show up?  Per Dr. Clouet, it could be because the asbestos is not in the full roof.  Health officials should be present at a larger meetings to speak with Sunnyside parents to lead discussions and answer questions after the quality test is done. 

  • When asked if the air quality test could be done even if the roof is patched and not abated, Dr. Clouet stated that the air quality test can be done.

  • Dr. Clouet stated that if the roof over the library does begin prior to the start of school, and is not finished due to excessive rain, then the area would be sealed off and school could start.  No one can be in the building while the work/action is happening.  Everything will be taken out of the library prior to them sealing the area off and starting the roof.  The rest of the roof will not happen until next June.

  • Last year, the bathroom in the kindergarten room had a leak.  Is this releasing asbestos into the air since the leak is coming from the roof?  Dr. Clouet will look into this issue.

  • It was presented to Dr. Clouet that it is an idea to send a respectable letter to the mayor in regards to our roof, and for it also to be read at an alderman meeting to show that we care.  Dr. Clouet stated that once we get the air quality control numbers he can coordinate with us and will send letters to our parents giving all the information.  We can also post that information and have a meeting with the health officials and Sunnyside parents to review everything. 

  • Dr. Clouet will also look into the area next to Sunnyside's cafeteria because it is still blocked off and has not been mowed.

Meeting adjourned at 7:30pm


Minutes: Katie Lawrence, Recording Secretary