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CHESTERTON — The Duneland School Board awarded contracts Monday for three construction projects to be done over the summer.

Gariup Construction of Gary was awarded contracts on two separate projects: renovation and relocation of the art and kindergarten rooms at Bailly Elementary and construction of a storage facility at Brummitt Elementary.

Gariup bid $526,500 on the Bailly project and $196,500 for the work at Brummitt.

Mr. David’s Flooring International of Itasca, Illinois, successfully bid $153,429 for replacement of the carpeted gymnasium floors at Yost and Jackson elementary schools.

In other business, the board accepted the strategic initiatives plan as presented by Superintendent Ginger Bolinger. As the document notes, “this plan is designed to honor the goal areas established (by the school community) while developing each goal into action items to improve our programming and processes.”

Those goals include student success, highly qualified staff and professional development, technology integration and college and career readiness, operational integrity, and collaborative environment.

The plan, Bolinger explained, does not change any goals but adds details to those goals as it shows the school community “how to spend time, money and effort as we move forward.”

Elsewhere, the board recognized several individuals and groups, including four retirees with a combined 83 years in the Duneland system and 97 teaching years overall.

These retirees are John Hayduk, English teacher at Chesterton High School; Dinah Pethes, fourth grade, and Beth Janes, second grade, both at Liberty Elementary; and Natalie Loden, art at Liberty Intermediate.

Also recognized were Chesterton High School’s two state wrestling champions — Lucas Davison at 195 pounds and 285-pounder Eli Pokorney — who were both undefeated this past season. Davison, a senior, will attend Northwestern University. Pokorney is a junior.

The board also officially recognized the CHS Debate team, which is headed for nationals after winning state for the fifth straight year. The high school debaters have now won state 13 of the past 15 years and have claimed state honors 28 times.

The board also honored member Kristin Kroeger for having formerly served as board president, succeeding the late Ralph Ayres. Current Board President John Marshall cited Kroeger’s efforts in helping negotiate a teacher contract and with the search for a new school superintendent.

“You set a high standard for professionalism,” Marshall told Kroeger.

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