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Ironton schools adapt to construction hurdles

Ironton City Schools students got an extra week or two added to their summer vacation. While their counterparts in other districts are already back in the classroom, Ironton students can sleep in and watch television until Sept. 5.

The late start to the school year was a logistical necessity. It allowed school staff time to shuffle books, desks and other equipment between buildings while the new schools are built.

Who goes where

Signs have been placed at the entrances to all buildings that will house students this year indicating what grades will be accommodated at that location.

While the high school is demolished and rebuilt, grades 9-12 are housed together at the old middle school on Delaware Street. Grades 7-8 are now at the Conley Center on the old high school campus, 1701 S. Seventh St. Grade six will be at the First Baptist Church education building

near the corner of Third and Vernon streets while grades four and five will be at Kingsbury, 315 S. Sixth St. Grades 2 and 3 are housed at Whitwell, 2220 S. Fifth St., while kindergarten and first grade are at the West Ironton building, 1207 N. Third St.

Superintendent Dean Nance said class enrollment lists (who gets what teacher) will be posted Aug. 31 for grades 1-6 at their respective schools.

For Grades 7 and 8, letters are being sent home and there will be an open house from 1-3 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 4, according to junior high school principal Toby Schreck.

“This is just to pick up schedules; this is not an necessarily open house,” Schrek said. “We will have one of those later on.”

High school students received their schedules before the end of the last school year.

Class supply lists are posted on Tigertown.com.

New students

Nance said those who plan to attend city schools for the first time can register at the board offices, 105 S. Fifth St.

“If they have to register they need to come here first and then they will be directed to the correct school,” Nance said. “We are making the enrollment process uniform across the district.”

Moving on up

The process of moving thousands of books, hundreds of desk, dozens of computers and all the equipment to operate several buildings took time and manpower.

“It’s been an interesting process and it’s been a time-consuming process and we have had to very creative,” Nance said. “But we have a motto that we are using for the next couple of years: Failure is not an option. And we use this is everything we do. We may have a hurdle we have to jump, a bus may be five minutes later than we had scheduled or whatever, but we will work through it. Failure is not an option.”

Nance credited maintenance foreman Richard Carte and transportation director Dave Lawless with successfully spearheading the undertaking and supervising the work of some 50 employees responsible for moving necessary equipment from one building to another.

“Without them and the maintenance crew this would not have happened,” Nance said. “The high school was emptied within a week of school being out.”

End of the year

The natural consequence of school starting later than usual is that it will end later than usual as well — and have fewer breaks in between.

As opposed to a week-long spring break, students will have an Easter break beginning Friday, Mar. 21. Classes will resume Tuesday, Mar. 25. The last day of class for students is June 4.