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County bussing problem solved

Features Editor

A bussing situation that has been simmering since early March found a rather simple, if not timely, solution at the Pike County Board of Education meeting Monday.

Ellie Alewine addressed the school board in an effort to find a suitable "bus stop" for six students who were once "conveniently" picked up and dropped off at Deer Run Mobile Home Park and RV Campground on U.S. Highway 231 north of Troy.

Alewine and her husband, Bob, own and operate the park where the turning lane to the park and entrance of the park were used

as a bus stop for the Pike County school bus for about nine years.

However, at the end of 2001, they were notified by Tom Jones, transportation supervisor for Pike County Schools, that the turn lane and entrance could not be used as a bus stop for safety reasons.

Alewine said using an alternate pickup spot north of the entrance would place the owners of the park in a libelous position in the event of an accident, so the bus stop was moved to a point which parents at the meeting said was inconvenient and unnecessary.

Superintendent John Key suggested that a bus might be able to pull off the highway and between the entryway of the park long enough for the bus to load and unload. The Alewines said they had no objection to the park entrance being blocked for a matter of minutes for the convenience of the students and their parents.

Alewine said Jones visited the park after the meeting with a bus the route bus and determined there is enough room for the bus to pull into the entrance of the park for a bus stop.

"We appreciate Mr. Jones’ efforts to resolve this quickly and are happy for the children and their parents," Alewine said.

The board approved a request by Dr. Mark Bazzell, assistant superintendent, to add competitive cheerleading to the list of athletic activities approved and supported by the board. The board also approved an extra supplement for the cheerleader coaches at $1,200.

In other business the board:

· Approved the plan for the Summer Bridge Program at Pike County Elementary School at a cost of $5,710.

· Approved the repair of the gymnasium bleachers at Goshen High School to alleviate the safety hazards in an estimated amount of $6,200.

· Approved employment of John Stone as school bus driver for the Brundidge route left vacant due to the death of David Ray Maulden.

· Approved the employment of Sarah Collier and Beth Garringer as bus aides for the two special needs routes, pending notification and refusal of the positions by previously laid off eligible personnel.

· Accepted the resignations for retirement effective June 1, 2002, of Paige Spivey as librarian at Goshen High School and Virginia Channell as teacher at Banks School.

· Accepted Joe Thornton’s resignation from his position as head coach at Goshen High School, effective at the end of his 2001-2002 contract.

· Approved Betty Vance’s request for a voluntary reduction from 10 to nine months in her position as school nurse.

· Approved the transfer of Mike Johnson to the Child Nutrition Program and employment of a new general maintenance person.

· Passed a resolution acknowledging May 5-11 as Teacher Appreciation Week.

· Approved request for the Goshen High School Junior Beta Club to attend Math and Science Day at Six Flags Over Georgia on May 3.

· Approved a request for Goshen High School to visit Gulf World in Panama City on May 17.

· Approved request by Donnella Carter, principal of Pike County Elementary School, to attend required COPS in Schools training in Memphis, Tenn. April 29 – May 1, with all expenses being paid by the Brundidge COPS in Schools grant.

· Approved the request by Pike County High School Latin Club to attend the Alabama Junior Classical League Convention in Birmingham April 26-27 with assistance from the board for transportation costs.

· Approved a field trip for Pike County High School JROTC students to visit Fort McPherson and Six Flags Over Georgia May 11.

· Approved four interdistrict transfer requests, one for medical purposes, one for academic purposes and two for the remainder of the school year.

· Approved, tentatively, the 2002-2003 school attendance calendar.

· Approved financial statements from February and March, the payment of the payrolls and bills and accounts for the months of March and April and a budge amendment.

· Passed resolution to redeem the Capital Outlay Tax Anticipation Warrants of 1989 and the Limited Obligation Capital Outlay Warrants of 1990.