During the July 9 special Garland ISD School Board meeting, trustees discussed and approved purchasing maintenance protective glass materials and supplies in preparation for the coming school year.
As on the agenda item, district staff recommended awarding the bid to Acrylic Source + for plexiglass and face shields. The estimated total amount of the bid is not to exceed $2 million.
Chief Financial Officer Brent Ringo said the district would pay for the materials using CARES Act funding and it will not affect the general fund.
“This will be items purchased for every site in the district, not just campuses. It will provide that plexiglass barrier for our receptionists, libraries, and the cafeterias, even on every teacher’s desk just to provide that extra protection,” Ringo said. “The face shields are reusable (and) can last anywhere up to three to five months. We are ordering 75,000 face shields; they are less than $2 a piece.”
He stated that Director of Health Services Renee Kotsopoulous has been involved in this process as it pertains to the health and safety of staff and students.
“We are looking out for the safety of all of our stakeholders who are on site,” he added.
The face shields cost about $120,000 as of presentation day, Ringo said. For all of the plexiglass, the cost comes out to about $1.3-1.4 million. What remains to be purchased is plexiglass for the tables in the cafeterias.
“All these decisions were made after we received our CARES training to verify what we were able to use these dollars for,” he said.
Superintendent Ricardo Lopez added, “When we started looking at different sources for protective barriers in our district, it was really important that we partner with somebody that we felt could meet our demands. Just going anywhere for a district our size and the short turnaround that we have was huge.”
Lopez said district staff went to the plant itself to check out the products.
“The thing that comforted us about one of the organizations that we’re looking at partnering with was the amount of turnaround time they could do. They’re used to doing huge orders. … They do really Grade A product,” he said. “I believe that they should be able to turn around and have this product before school starts.”
Ringo added that the company will not only produce the products but install them for the price they’re seeking as well. It was clarified that due to the timing and the governor’s order, this service did not go out to bid.