Austintown Local Schools will use a $191,704 grant from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency to resurface the track behind Fitch High School with material from recycled tires.

Janet Polish, the Director of State and Federal Programs for the Austintown Local School District, tells 21 News that the grant was secured by her office with the help of a group of students at Fitch High School. 

The students, from Fitch's Introduction to Engineering class taught by Robert Wyant, put on their coats and went out to the track during the winter months to measure and estimate how many tires would have to be recycled to resurface the entire track, allowing a more accurate grant request from the district.

Their measurements, Polish said, were crucial to being able to secure the grant funding, which is a 100% match program from the state, meaning Austintown Schools will also be contributing an equal amount for the project.

Polish says that the track will close during June and July of 2024, with more specific dates to come. They aim to have the resurfacing finished before the start of the 2024 high school football season.

Polish also wanted to thank the Mahoning County Solid Waste Management District for their help with creating an estimate for the project.

The grants are part of a $6.3 million round of funding distributed across the state to 99 recipients, with more than $3.7 million going towards community and littler prevention programs. 

Youngstown also received $27,250 for litter clean-up, outreach, education, and a tire amnesty program.