Board finalizes capital projects

By Nicholas Elmes -

Stokes County Schools will install Aiphone security systems at eight elementary schools this year, but will not be creating a new emergency tone system at any schools following a final decision on capital projects Monday night.

The Aiphone systems, already in place at three elementary schools, provide a way to keep the schools locked during the day by requiring visitors to be buzzed in by a school employee.

Director of Operations David Burge said the system would likely not work at most of the county middle and high schools due to the number of buildings on each campus.

“We have to do what we can to keep the schools safe,” said Board Chair Sonya Cox, noting that the systems would provide an added level of security.

The board also agreed to replace lights and poles at the North Stokes High School baseball field.

Maintenance Director Ricky Goins told the board that a recent inspection of the poles had revealed concerns over the the stability of the top portion of the poles and the metal brackets used, noting that they could lead to safety liabilities.

“The bottom line is we need to do North this year and South next year,” said Assistant Superintendent Tony George. “If not they will shut us down.”

Goins said the system was also working to repair roof decking issues at Chestnut Grove Middle School.

“This is not a repair of the roof, just a repair of the deck,” he said. “But after this is fixed I would feel confident if I had children or grandchildren there.”

The board agreed to move any money that had previously been budgeted for tone systems and for Aiphone installations at middle and high schools to the system’s emergency fund.

Nicholas Elmes may be reached at 336-591-8191 or on Twitter @NicholasElmes.

By Nicholas Elmes

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