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Medford school schedule adjusted

Seven Medford schools will adjourn classes up to two days early for summer break and begin next school year up to two days late to complete bond construction projects.

All 18 Medford schools were scheduled to release school for the summer vacation on June 6.

Howard, Jacksonville, Oak Grove, Ruch and Wilson elementary schools are expected to adjourn June 4 and resume classes two days late for the 2008-09 school year.

Lone Pine Elementary and North Medford High School will delay adjournment by up to two days and start classes in the fall up to two days.

The delays are expected to affect more than 4,500 pupils.

Medford schools Superintendent Phil Long said construction crews would need the extra time to complete work at the seven schools, which is funded by a $189 million bond issue voters approved in November 2006.

It will also take about two days for teachers to pack and unpack their classrooms. Without cutting school days, the district would have to pay teachers additional wages for the time spent on packing and unpacking under a union contract.

The average cost of a teacher for four days with benefits is $1,280.

"While we are always reluctant to reduce instructional time ... we recognize this is something we need to do to carry out the bond projects," said School Board Vice Chair Eric Dziura.

Howard will receive new heating and air-conditioning systems, flooring, roofing and paint.

At Jacksonville, new heating and air-conditioning systems, flooring and a sidewalk along the back street will be installed.

Heating and air-conditioning systems, flooring and roofing will be replaced at Ruch.

Wilson also will receive new heating and air-conditioning systems, flooring, roofing and windows.

Work plans for the summer at North Medford include window replacement, renovation of the fine arts building and new siding.

Oak Grove will undergo a major renovation. Details of the design are not yet available.

The majority of the Lone Pine building will be replaced.

Reach reporter Paris Achen at 541-776-4459 or pachen@mailtribune.com.