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Trades classrooms are coming along

CHASSELL – The Chassell Schools District’s new trades program is progressing, school superintendent Howard Parmentier said recently, and the students are receiving hands on experience.

The trades classes will be conducted in an existing building behind the school that is being converted for the purpose, and should be completed this week.

Parmentier said the trades program students have done much of the work themselves to prepare the building for classes.

“They did all the framing and the electrical,” he said. “We now have a local contractor in there who’s finishing up the drywall and the mudding, and they will be painting hopefully the end of this week, early next week, and our students will be able to go in there, put the machines where they need to be and move forward with our outside classroom.”

Mike Randell, Chassell High School’s industrial arts instructor, said the students will be installing black pipe this week. While black pipe is normally used for gas, in this instance it will be used for another purpose.

“We’re just going to be running compressed air through it for our compressors for both shops, the trades and the small engines/automotive. And then we’ll probably be running conduit. We won’t necessarily run the actual wiring for our surface mount outlets. They’re going to be high-voltage for welders, but they will get the experience of hanging and running electrical conduit.”

Randell while the students may run wire, they will not be exposed to danger.

“When we start dealing with higher voltage, even with house wiring, we may run the wire, but we won’t be connecting anything to the panel,” Randell said. “They might run some of the wires for the heavier gauge welders, but they won’t be doing the live wire.”

Parmentier said the students are proud of the work they have done, and that they are now a part of the program on a deeper level.

“They now have a stake in it. That’s huge for the students, because it means more to them now,” Parmentier said. “By getting them involved in the actual building, they’re building this program just as the school is. It’s something that they can see, it’s something that’s staying here.”

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