The tiny Loon Lake and Valley school districts north of Spokane have teamed up to build a new transportation maintenance center.
Construction began last month on the new $2.4 million facility located at Highway 395 and Bulldog Creek Road, north of Loon Lake.
The majority of funding for the center will come from the state, and the two districts will split the remaining costs. It will include three new bays for servicing and repairing school buses for both districts, as well as a covered area to house the fleet of 21 buses.
“The project will mean safer buses for students,” said Steve Waunch, Loon Lake superintendent.
Previously, the bus mechanic employed by both districts was working out of an old hay barn in Valley and in an unheated garage in Loon Lake that was not large enough to hold a bus.
“The (new) facility also will provide a warm, enclosed area for the mechanics to work on the buses without having to worry about hanta virus. It’s a big improvement over the barn we’ve been in,” Waunch said.
Public agencies, such as the local fire districts, also will be able to use the facility to service public vehicles, school officials said.
The facility, designed by ALSC Architects of Spokane, is expected to be complete in October.
Shadle students build cabinets for the blind
Student-athletes from Shadle Park High School recently built and donated night lights to the Lilac Blind Foundation.
The lighting cabinets were designed and built by the students to help the blind and visually impaired navigate around their homes, said Ray Harding, a drafting teacher and coach at the northwest Spokane high school.
“We have people in our community with different levels of impaired vision,” Harding wrote in a district news release. “Shadle Park High School student-athletes are attempting to make a difference in the lives of those people by casting light into these families’ homes.”
Shadle DECA wins spot at nationals
A team of students from the Shadle Park High School DECA (Distributive Educational Clubs of America) earned a spot at the organization’s national conference.
Marketing students Jennifer Crabtree, Jessica Hart, and Jayme Gilliam presented a Chapter Awards Project for a recent state career and development conference in Bellevue, Wash., to earn their spot at the national conference in Orlando, Fla., this spring. Out of 50 entries, the students’ project placed sixth overall, said Erin Ruehl, teacher and DECA advisor.
More than 10,000 DECA members will convene at the national event.