Board to accept
bids on building
An offer extended earlier this month fell through, but interest in the India School property remains strong.
"It's been a very busy day," Assistant Supt. Craig Fiegel said during the Lawrence school board meeting Monday evening.
Earlier Monday the district received calls from two different sources, both expressing interest in purchasing the building.
"We've had two similar offers," Fiegel said. "After discussion the administration recommends to have the board make a motion to take bids on the property."
The board vote unanimously to accept sealed bids from both parties, with the minimum bid set at $780,000.
Once they review the offers board members will have 10 days to extend a contract to the winning bidder.
"The board has the right to reject bids if it's in the best interest of the district," Fiegel said.
Fiegel did not say who the bidders were.
Until now the Lawrence Public Schools did not have specific guidelines for the use of animals in the classroom.
Last fall when the issue first arose several teachers stood on opposite sides of the fence in terms of what animals were acceptable to bring in to Lawrence schools.
But what started as a howl turned into a whimper.
Committee chair Linda Allen, who presented guidelines to the board, met with no opposition when she presented her proposal Monday. The board voted unanimously to approve the guidelines for the use of animals in the classroom.
"The guidelines set the standard in respect for and care of animals in the classroom," Allen said. They "also protect teachers and students from animals. We're looking out for animals and the staff in our schools."
The guidelines differentiate between animals that can be used for science purposes and those used in nonscience classrooms, in preschools and at the elementary levels.
For example, bats may be allowed in high school science classes but only for a short period of time and may not be handled by students. Bats would not be permitted in preschool, elementary or nonscience classes.
Puppies and kittens would be allowed in schools as visiting animals only and not as classroom residents.
"This is a great improvement," board member Austin Turney said. "This is much more reasonable."
The guidelines are available at schools throughout the district.