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School Board Chooses to Build One Centralized Tech Center

Board of Education General 07 300HOPKINS COUNTY, Ky. (9/3/13) – The Hopkins County Board of Education voted 4-1 in favor of building one centrally-located career and technical center during its regular bi-monthly board meeting Monday, Sept. 3.

The question about whether to build one central location or two smaller versions — one at both Hopkins County Central and Madisonville-North Hopkins high schools was directed to members of the community, parents and students through a survey posted online on the Hopkins County Schools web site and also sent home with students.

In March, it was determined that the majority of respondents to that survey chose the option of having two facilities — one at each of the high schools.

The matter was addressed at the end of the regular meeting, when board member Mike Morgan moved that a decision be made on the career and technical center. The board agreed putting it to a vote.

Morgan moved that the board vote to build one centralized-facility for both high schools' students. Members Steve Faulk, Suzanne Duncan, Morgan and chairman Randy Franklin voted in favor of the motion. Member Shannon Embry cast the lone, "Nay," vote, and said he wanted to go with separate tech centers because it was the option most favored by those responding to the poll.

Building a career and technical center has been in the works since 2011, but was put on hold.

Ground was broken for the tech center in May 2011 for a 40,000-square-foot building near the Earlington Exit off the Pennyrile Parkway. After subsidence issues at the site, ongoing construction was halted in December 2011.

In November, the board decided that an alternate site would be chosen and that the Earlington Exit site would be abandoned.

The school system is involved in litigation with Associated Engineering, the design firm that performed a site evaluation, and with Travelers Insurance for construction risk insurance claims to help recoup the nearly $6 million already spent on the abandoned site.

Rita Dukes Smith
SurfKY News

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