Spring break schedule set for county schools
by David Lazenby
Jun 10, 2010 | 1899 views | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Davey Reed discusses his desire to purchase the old Carbon Hill High School during a March 11 Walker County school board meeting. On Thursday, the board approved his $112,000 bid on the facility.  Photo By: David Lazenby
Davey Reed discusses his desire to purchase the old Carbon Hill High School during a March 11 Walker County school board meeting. On Thursday, the board approved his $112,000 bid on the facility. Photo By: David Lazenby
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Despite a poll of Walker County school employees that showed nearly 70 percent wanted spring break to be held April 11-15 instead of March 14-18, the Walker County Board of Education on Thursday voted to schedule the vacation for March.

Prior to the vote, School Superintendent Vonda Beaty recommended that the school board approve having spring break in April for the 2010-2011 school year, as recommended to her by the school system’s calendar committee.

Beaty said weather days that were previously scheduled for March can be moved to April.

The matter of when to hold spring break dominated discussion at May’s monthly meeting of the school board. At the May 13 school board meeting, assistant superintendent Alan Trotter said it creates a “hardship” for area families when the Walker County and Jasper City school systems have spring break at different times.

Thursday’s move aligns the two school systems’ spring break with Bevill State Community College and Sumiton Christian School, which also will have spring break March 14-18.

The school board’s decision was applauded by Sherman Roberts, an administrator at the Alternative School, who said in May he believes having spring break too late in the year makes it difficult for students to focus during the remainder of the school year.

“When you got a spring break that late, when you come back it’s hard to get the kids motivated to finish the rest of the year,” Roberts said in May. “When you kind of divide it (school year) up, you’re going to get better results.”

It was also pointed out at the May meeting that having the county and city schools’ spring breaks coincide will benefit students from both school systems who take classes at the Walker County Center of Technology.

Voting for having spring break in April were Sonia Waid and Jeff Burroughs.

Also on Thursday, the school board agreed to sell the old Carbon Hill High School, which is no longer in use by the county school district.

The high bidder, Davey Reed, who was one of two individuals who bid on the property, will pay $112,000 for the old school.

School Superintendent Vonda Beaty said money from the sale will be used exclusively for the Carbon Hill ballfields currently being constructed.

Also on Thursday, Beaty read aloud a letter written to her recently that expressed appreciation for school board secretary Sandy Johnson, who helped the individual acquire documentation needed to renew his Florida drivers license. The man’s school records had been lost in the Parrish High School fire of 1979. Johnson was able to locate a 1946 census that listed the individual’s family members.

“I thank you and I definitely thank Miss Johnson for her help, cheerful attitude and exceptional customer service she provided,” the letter stated.

The next regular school board meeting will be held July 8. However, a called meeting to approve a new anti-harrassment and bullying policy prior to a July 1 deadline and attend other business is expected to be held on June 23.