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2008 school calendar adjusted

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By Donald Richie

Students in Harrison County schools still have a May 30 closing day for the year, but will have to attend classes on Memorial Day to get it.

The Harrison County Board of Education approved an amended calendar Tuesday night which cut the early dismissal Monday on May 19 and added a full day on May 26.

Director of pupil personnel Lloyd Ogden said the changes were necessary in order to meet the states obligation for 141 six-hour school days.

He said he knew the decision to go on Memorial Day would likely be unpopular, but the other alternatives weren't any better.

"The options there would be going on a Saturday, going in June or taking some of spring break," he said.

Board member Lucy Vanhook said going on Memorial Day was not unprecedented.

"In 1996, they went on Memorial Day," she said.

The May 30 closing day will be a half day and the other early dismissal Mondays will remain as originally scheduled.

Sickness and weather have contributed to the lengthening of the calendar, which originally had May 15 as the last day of school.

In a related matter, Ogden gave his monthly attendance report in which he pointed out that despite the illness problem, the year-to-date attendance is slightly better than the 2006-2007 school year.

In other action, the board:

Approved $6,936.25 toward the purchase of new uniforms for the Harrison County High School Band. Director Chris Hedges said the total for the new uniforms was $10,136.25 and boosters contributed $3,200 toward that figure.

• Awarded the bid for mowing school properties to Twisted Oak Landscaping.

• Changed the April board meeting from April 15 to April 22.

• Elected Vanhook as vice-chair to replace Joe England, who died suddenly last month.

• Approved the Jump Rope for Heart fundraiser.

• Donated $1,000 to Project Graduation.

• Heard good news reports from board members.

• Gave permission for the HCHS speech team to travel on an overnight trip to Danville for district tournament this weekend and possibly to the finals in Las Vegas in June.

• Heard a legislative update from superintendent Dr. Roy Woodward, who went over the states budget situation.