Central School has been sold to Zabka properties to development.

At a Chillicothe R-II School Board meeting earlier this week, the board accepted a bid from Nathan Zabka, Zabka Properties for a bid of $31,500. Dan Wiebers, superintendent, said Zabka promised to get a performance bond for $175,000 and plans to have 10-15 apartments completed in the old school in three years.

Wiebers said the sale of the property is expected to be completed in the next 30 days.

At a special school board meeting in August where the board and community members discussed the future of the school after another development group rescinded their accepted bid, Zabka discussed his pans for the school which was built in 1954.

Zabka, a Chillicothe resident, firefighter and contractor, said he was interested in rehabbing the building and would turn the first level of the school into one bedroom, handicap accessible apartments and the second floor would be two-bedroom apartments. He expected to be able to have 20-22 apartments in the building and rent them each out for $600-$650 per month.

Wiebers said Zabka’s accepted bid stated he would have laundry facilities and 10-15 apartments done in three years.

The only other bid for the Central School property came from Perkins Dozing int he amount of $150,000 for demolition. Wiebers noted the board viewed that bid as incomplete because it did not contain any information about asbestos abatement.

During the recent school board meeting, Wiebers said the board set the tuition rate for the 2020-2021 school year at a rate of $9,196.71, nearly $700 more than the current rate for sending schools, but does not include Grand River Technical School.

The board also approved a request from Chillicothe Elementary School Principal Abby Smith for a behavior support aid to assist in a classroom, along with a request from High School Principal Dan Nagel for an assistant wrestling coach. Wiebers said the additional coach was needed due to a growing wrestling program.

Before the October school board meeting, Wiebers requested the board’s three-member facilities committee meet to discuss the administration offices. Wiebers noted they will discuss details about the current administration building and possibilities of building new offices since the current offices are uninhabitable following May's historic flooding which affected the building. The administration offices were temporarily relocated to the high school library for two months until August when they moved to 2005 Washington St.

The budget committee is also scheduled to meet in advance of the October board meeting to discuss the possibility of a tax levy increase being placed before voters on the April 2020 ballot.

The next school board meeting wis at 6:30 p.m., Oct. 15 in the library at the high school.