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Marion County Public Schools resumed classes on Aug. 8, and have started the year off on the right foot, according to Superintendent Dr. Chuck Hamilton.
"We've had an absolutely outstanding start to our school year..." Hamilton said during his superintendent's report at the Marion County Board of Education's regular monthly meeting Tuesday, Aug. 14. "Everybody involved has made this an outstanding experience for our students."
Hamilton said the transportation services were phenomenal, food service did a "fabulous job" and each school's staff was prepared. The students also seemed ready to come back to school and get back to work, he said.
In terms of enrollment, each school is at or near capacity.
"We're tight," Hamilton said. "Calvary Elementary is packed. West Marion is the only place we have a little bit of room. But, that's a good problem to have for a school district."
Hamilton said increasing enrollment could create some staffing issues that the school board might have to address eventually.
Board Member Mike Cecil asked Hamilton if year-round school would ever be a possibility in Marion County.
"Rather than getting the minimum in, I'd like to see us bump it up a few days..." Cecil said. "It seems like we try to do the minimum in this country and not do what's possible."
The board didn't spend much time discussing the possibility, but they all seemed open to the idea.
"I think you would have a lot of people support and agree with you on that," Hamilton said.
Marion County High 965 936
Calvary Elementary 258 257
Glasscock Elementary 402 420
Lebanon Elementary 383 404
West Marion Elementary 432 421
Lebanon Middle 389 391
St. Charles Middle 287 301
Hugh C. Spalding Academy n/a 20
TOTAL 3,116 3,150
In other matters:
• Leonard Bower of RossTarrant Architects reported that the renovation work at MCHS is 88 percent complete.
• The board recognized the Marion County Future Farmers of America program, which was named one of the top 15 FFA programs in the state for the fifth year in a row.
• The board recognized Brooke Gordon for being the Family, Career and Community Leaders of America state president. Gordon is only the second MCHS student to be the FCCLA state president.
Board approves 1 percent raise
The school board approved a 1 percent raise for all full-time employees, retroactive to July 1, 2012.