Office of the Superintendent
Welcome to the Superintendent's Office
Anthony J. Panella
Secretary to the Superintendent and District Clerk
The start of a school year is exciting as students return to classrooms, reconnect with friends, and fill our hallways with their energy and laughter. Adding to the excitement for our community and our athletic, health and physical education programs will be the September opening of the newly renovated turf field, new tennis courts and other improvements at the high school’s Dimp Wagner Field.
If you have driven past our high school athletic stadium on Westmoreland Drive between Berryman Drive and Washington Highway, no doubt you have seen and heard a lot of activity. We thank our neighbors for their patience throughout the spring and summer.
As you may recall, the community overwhelmingly supported the $29.6 million capital improvement project on Dec. 13, 2016. The high school stadium is the first phase of the multi-year, multiphase capital project that includes upgrades at all buildings, renovations to the educational and public access areas at the high school, and site work at each building. Capital Project webpage.
Thirteen years ago, our district was one of the first in the area to install artificial turf. Since then, improvements to the synthetic materials and installation technology were developed. By replacing the field, our students in physical education classes, our athletic teams and visiting teams will be playing on a surface that can help minimize and reduce injuries. Emblazoned on the turf will be the district athletic mascot branding. We hope there will be a sense of community pride when fans see it for the first time and when kids step out on it throughout the season. Wrapping around the turf field is a new track with state-of-the-art materials for our track and field teams and the many community members who walk the track throughout the year. The community also makes good use of the tennis courts. New fencing around the courts and a larger buffer zone of grass between the complex and residents’ property lines will be installed. Though the project did reduce the number of tennis courts from six to five, the track and field program will benefit from a redesigned space for shot put and a discus cage that points away from nearby homes and has improved field drainage.
As a means to protect the investment in our facilities, you will notice that fencing surrounds the complex. The complex will be available for the community to use — when not being used for a school function — from approximately sunrise to sunset, with access through electronically controlled gates that will lock at sunset. There is a handicapped-accessible access point from the parking lot on Westmoreland Avenue.
A big shout out to our custodial and maintenance crew for their hard work this summer. They mowed, weeded, mulched and more to make our landscape attractive. They also moved furniture from every classroom, cleaned and waxed floors to get our buildings ready for the first day of school Sept. 5. I wish all our Amherst families a wonderful first day of school and a year filled with learning. But there is still a lot of summer left, so enjoy it and we will see you soon.