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Jefferson County Schools welcomes 155 new students

September 03, 2003|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - In addition to 155 new students, Jefferson County Schools also dealt with lightning strikes, power interruptions and a misplaced furniture order when it opened to students last week, Superintendent of Schools R. Steven Nichols said Tuesday.

On the second day of school, the school system had a total of 7,158 students, which is 155 more than it had last year at the same time, Nichols told the Jefferson County Board of Education Tuesday night.

Although Nichols said the school system had a very smooth opening last Tuesday, he said there were also some "missteps."

At Blue Ridge Elementary School, Allegheny Power Co. disconnected power to the school's portable classrooms, Nichols said.

It is unclear why the power was disconnected, although it has since been corrected, Nichols said.

New furniture that was supposed to be sent to Charles Town Middle School instead ended up in Pennsylvania, Nichols said.

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Air conditioning was cut to Wright Denny Intermediate School when a new transformer was hooked up outside the building, Nichols said.

Jefferson County High School has had a long running problem with its clocks not running properly.

Now they're working, thanks to some help from Mother Nature.

Nichols said the high school was struck by lightning and the clocks have been working ever since.

"For the life of me, I can't explain it. We're going to take it as a gift of God," Nichols told board members.

Accommodating a constant stream of new students has been an ongoing concern for school officials. Every school is overcrowded and school officials are closely monitoring their student populations in an attempt to meet student needs, Nichols said.

Later in the meeting, Nichols said the state Board of Education plans to hold one of its meetings in Jefferson County in October.

Nichols said he plans to take state board of education members to crowded schools and fast-growing subdivisions in the area to give them an idea what the school system faces.

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