Esky bridge ­closure may delay buses

Jordan Beck | Daily Press In this Daily Press file photo, work continues on the Michigan Department of Transportation’s bridge replacement project.

GLADSTONE — During their last regular meeting before Gladstone Area Schools’ 2017-18 school year starts on Sept. 5, Gladstone Superintendent Jay Kulbertis spoke briefly to members of the Gladstone School Board Monday about the possible impact of traffic on the beginning of the year.

Specifically, Kulbertis noted that an upcoming closure of the U.S. 2 and 41 bridge over the Escanaba River could lead to issues related to bus scheduling. The closure is scheduled to last from 9 p.m. on Sept. 5 to 6 a.m. on Sept. 8.

In the hopes of minimizing the effects of this closure, the district has contacted local law enforcement agencies to ask for their assistance.

“We’ve reached out to Gladstone Public Safety, we’ve reached out to the State Police, (and) pretty much said ‘we will need your help,'” Kulbertis said. He noted that this was done in response to the potentially large amount of traffic on M-35 and other roads that will be used for bridge detours.

While this closure may create added difficulties during the district’s first week of the school year, Kulbertis said he is ­optimistic that things will go relatively well.

“Our hope is that our parents don’t notice anything, our kids don’t notice anything, and the only people that are amazingly frustrated but happy that that week is over (are) your hardworking people here (in) the Gladstone Schools family,” he said.

In other business, the board:

-approved a labor agreement with the Gladstone Education Association (GEA). Kulbertis said this agreement is for two years, and that it is in line with previous agreements between the association and the board.

The GEA will vote on ratifying this agreement Thursday.

-approved the district’s calendar for the 2017-18 school year. A total of 10 half days are listed on this year’s calendar, including one on Halloween.

-approved a tax levy request for six mills.

-approved a one-year leave of absence for Wayne Marshall as Assistant Girls Tennis Coach.

-accepted a letter of resignation from Ann Resse as JV Volleyball Coach. The board also approved the hiring of Samantha Eagle to fill this position.

-approved minor changes to student handbooks.

-adopted Neola Policy Updates Vol. 31, No. 2 and ESSA on second reading.


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