Classes Will Start Late at Meridian Schools

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By Evie Allen

MOUNDS -- Meridian teachers were set to begin the school year Friday, but they'll have to wait another week.

This time last year all Meridian School District 101 students were sharing classrooms at the high school.

"It was pretty difficult getting used to the high school level because I was just an eighth grader," explained freshman Cymone Ballard.

Students were forced to make the transition after toxic mold was discovered at the elementary school. Eventually the building was condemned and all the students were learning under one roof with on a split-shift schedule.   

Pre-K through 2nd and 7th-12th grades were going to class in the mornings. Third through 5th grades went in the afternoons. It was a big adjustment for students, staff and parents.

New Superintendent and grade school Principal David Rademacker says this year will bring some relief.

"Just the fact that they'll be going to a typical school day is a plus," he said.

The school built five modular classrooms to house 3rd-6th graders, allowing them a normal class schedule. Since the buildings are not complete , everyone will have to wait another week. 

"We are waiting for an occupancy permit and we're looking at getting that hopefully no later than Tuesday," said Rademacker.     

Rademacker took over in July replacing Brent Boren. He said he looks forward to helping students achieve their best this school year.

"The biggest focus for our administrative team is going to be the academic performance of our students. We really feel that needs to be our biggest push," said Rademacker.

Teachers will start next Friday and students the following Monday. The school was also awarded money to rebuild the elementary school. The $8.5 million project will be attached to the high school.

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