BY MELANIE BUCK –
Ouachita River School District is in the midst of moving their District Offices into a newly purchased property the school acquired last October. The land, previously owned by Acorn’s Coach Keith Wilsey, sits just behind Acorn Elementary and includes a home and seven acres.
ORSD District Superintendent Jerry Strasner said the purchase and renovations cost approximately $170,000, but they were able to save quite a bit by using their maintenance staff to perform the remodel and their tech staff rewiring the offices for their network of computers and such. The three bedroom, two bath home on the property is being converted into the new offices. Part of the land is already in use as a playground.
The building will house Superintendent Strasner, Federal Coordinator Kathy Medord, District Treasurer Shelly Staggs, Accounts Payable Connie Abernathy, Child Nutritionist and Bookkeeper Tammi Faught, and Student Data APSCAN Coordinator and Bookkeeper Judy Schuller. Although they are currently on the same campus, they are not in as close proximity as the new offices will allow for. “It’s exciting to be together and it’s also a good addition to our strategic plan,” said Strasner.
Not only will it bring the district office personnel all together, it will also free up space in Acorn’s Preschool building. Strasner said long range plans for that building are to convert the entire building into preschool. They currently have three full classrooms with a total of 60 preschool students. They plan to start that project this Summer, with the maintenance team performing that work as well.
Strasner said the transition into the new offices should be complete soon after Spring Break, and they plan to be fully operational by March 28.