WEST LONG BRANCH: Following a visit to the Frank Antonides and Betty McElmon schools last Saturday mayor Janet Tucci and her fellow council visitors reported the conditions they found and urged support to the referendum to be voted on next Tuesday March 10, a full election day of voting hours from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Mayor Tucci said she, Council members Fred Migliaccio, Chris Neyhart and Jose Villa toured the buildings including the boiler room, classrooms and hallways which were the same she saw when she attended that school in 1958. She said she was concerned that children did not have the educational environment and learning tools necessary at a time when a 21st Century school facility is needed, not one as it was in her day.
She said it is not usable for today's world. Even basics like doors that do not meet ADA requirements remain in use. The boiler room showed old components which Migliaccio called "inadequate".
So did Neyhart and Villa at the visit although Mr., Villa was not at the Wednesday night council meeting.
Neyhart said the HVAC poor operation brought security issues as well as unreliability, Security was compromised as teachers had to open windows to cool rooms in warm weather. Floor tiles are asbestos and some faulty, a danger and environmental concern for health reasons.
The science lab was as Tucci remembered it in her day, with three Bunsen burners, not up to date tools and equipment.
Migliaccio said he saw a facility in need of attention that had been going on for many years. He called it poor managing of the facility for many years, avoiding needed update for whatever reasons, likely financial. "Someone there was asleep at the switch," he said.
All asked for voters to go to the polls and vote their conscience.