Dothan Preparatory School

Workers build a new sidewalk in front of Dothan Preparatory School on Friday. Some unforeseen construction costs has increased the cost of the restructuring project by $181,035.90.

The Dothan City school board recently authorized an additional $181,035.90 to Wyatt Sassier Construction, LLC to address unforeseen and necessary repairs and improvements identified while working on restructuring schools.

The approval increases its total contract amount to over $6.6 million. The funds come out of the $15 million capital improvement bond approved by the board in January to fund the first phase of restructuring. The contract with Wyatt Sassier Constructions includes a contingency clause to account for unpredicted circumstances.

Large amounts of rain brought attention to a major flaw in Dothan Preparatory Academy’s drainage system.

“We got a big heavy rain one weekend and it started backing up to the windows and flooding the basement area,” Facilities Director Tim Holley said in an interview.

After an extensive investigation, it was determined that the existing drainage pipes and inlets near the courtyard adjacent to the ninth-grade building were neither adequate nor maintained in a manner to allow them to operate properly. Additionally, the drain that was connected to the cafeteria was filled with old grease that had to be flushed out.

“We had to call the civil engineers in. They came in and designed it out there and got the guys in as soon as the rain quit and reworked it to where the drains were going to another drain and re-laid it with sod,” Holley said.

Other issues sited by Superintendent Phyllis Edwards included electrical panels that were still live and crumbling drywall.

“We need to do this so we can obviously keep moving toward our opening day,” Edwards said to board members at Monday’s called board meeting.

Holley also noted some soil issues discovered while preparing the land for the new carpool lanes that could cost the system $8,000 to $9,000.

“It was not compact enough so they had to bring in a lot of different soil of different types, compact it and get it to the standards and everything that the road could hold,” Holley said.

The roadway completion is expected later this week. Signage and marquees are being placed at various locations, the last ones expected to be installed on Aug. 15.

Cleaning teams of about 45 people will come up behind construction workers to clean the schools quickly in anticipation of the start of school.

“I don’t see anything that would stop us from getting on; it’s just not going to be a fun three weeks,” Holley said. “It’s going to be a busy, busy three weeks.”

Other action items:

>> The board unanimously approved the hiring of the school system’s new public information officer, Megan Dorsey, who previously worked in the same role for the Dothan Education Foundation. She will begin her role with the system in August.

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