The Kodiak Island Borough School District will explore an upgrade to its 40-year-old teaching vessel, the K-HI-C.

In a unanimous vote Monday night, the school board granted the district permission to negotiate with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game on a contract for renovating and lengthening the K-HI-C.

Since the K-HI-C was purchased by Kodiak High School, it has been used in the winter and spring by students in maritime safety and seamanship classes. Fish and Game uses it in the summer and fall. In exchange, the state pays for maintenance and operating costs.

While the K-Hi-C has been kept in shape throughout its lifetime, it needs extensive work, said Jeff Wadle, a management biologist for Fish and Game. The boat needs to have its deck replaced, and Fish and Game would like to extend the boat from 42 feet to 48 feet while that work takes place.

The project will cost about $250,000, but the state and school district need to negotiate ownership of the boat, first. The state is unwilling to pay for upgrades to a boat it does not own.

Lawyers on both sides are expected to meet to arrange terms.

In other business Monday, the school board approved the district’s 2014-2015 strategic plan. That plan outlines the district’s goals for next school year and sets benchmarks to judge success or failure. Under the strategic plan, the district will hold 10 town hall meetings between November 2013 and November 2014 to inform the public about changes at Kodiak schools. The first such meeting was scheduled for Tuesday night.

Contact Mirror editor James Brooks at editor@kodiakdailymirror.com.

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