DeSoto school construction project months behind schedule - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

DeSoto school construction project months behind schedule

A Mid-South school is boarded up while students are still in class, and that's left parents wondering what's going on. A Mid-South school is boarded up while students are still in class, and that's left parents wondering what's going on.

(WMC-TV) - A Mid-South school is boarded up while students are still in class, and that's left parents wondering what's going on.

Not only are Olive Branch Middle School students surrounded by chalk boards in their classrooms, they've also been staring at plywood boards for months because of a delay in a construction project.

Usually boarded up windows means the building is abandoned, but that's not the case at OBMS. Class is very much in session.

Despite the cold weather that's setting in, students are boarded up inside classrooms with wood replacing glass in their windows.

"The windows that were there had to be removed," said Allen Wagner, president of Wagner Contractors. "They were asbestos containing."

Wagner said the project was stalled because the supplier has been slow.

"It shouldn't be a month more than what you think it should be," said Buck Carter, a local contractor who owns Home Repair Company.

Carter said planning ahead is a major part of completing a project.

"They should know when they're going to get the material before they start the job," he said.

DeSoto County Schools Superintendent Milton Kuykendall said the project started in mid-June and was supposed to be completed in September. He said they removed 46 windows that were supposed to be replaced right away. But it's November, the boards are still up and he calls it unacceptable.

In a statement from Desoto County Schools a representative wrote:

"Superintendent Milton Kuykendall met with the president of Wagner General Contracting today to work toward resolving this issue... the DeSoto County School Board gave the superintendent the authority to terminate the district's contract with Wagner if the window project is not underway by Monday, November 14."

"We agree with the owner and we agree with the parents and the students that it is a problem and we have been pressing our supplier and our manufacture and hopefully we're going to have everything in next week and this will be a non-issue," Wagner said.

Kuykendall said the board will accept new bids on the project if a quick resolution is not reached.

Both Wagner and Kuykendall say they are hopeful that the matter can be resolved by Monday.

Copyright 2011 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly