The Times West Virginian

Local News

April 8, 2014

Marion County BOE talks new calendar

Provides shorter holidays; sent to state office for approval

FAIRMONT — The Marion County Board of Education discussed next year’s academic calendar yet again at its meeting Monday.

A calendar committee put together three options for next year and sent them out to faculty for a vote.

The committee sent out samples to 1,100 employes, and 866 answered with their vote — a typical response based on previous years, said Administrative Assistant Randall Farley.

However, the voting results were not as typical.

Usually, there is a landslide vote toward one option, Farley said, but this year the votes were more evenly spread among the three options.

The winning calendar proposed that school starts Aug. 21 for students and ends May 28. Graduation would be somewhere around May 22, Farley said.

Holiday breaks would be shorter, which follows along with public opinion, Farley said.

“I think this particular calendar has everything that was in the survey that we did,” he said. “It pretty much honors what the survey results said, and the people on the committee tried to make sure they honored what the survey said.”

Student have a proposed Thanksgiving break beginning on Thanksgiving Day, and they would return that following Monday.

Christmas holiday is proposed for December 24 through January 2.

Spring break would be scheduled for March 30 through April 6, but it could be shortened if Marion County schools are closed for snow days. March 30 through April 1 are scheduled as makeup days to be taken as needed.

Makeup days are also added onto the end of the year to be taken as needed, up through June 30.

The calendar dates are contingent upon the board’s approval when members discuss and vote on it April 21. The calendar will then be sent to the state board office for approval.

Superintendent Gary Price also spoke at the meeting about taking precautions to ensure the WESTEST, that will now be online, goes smoothly during its first year.

CDWG, a technology company, has 150 computers on hold for Marion County that are ready to ship overnight should a group of computers in one of the schools need replaced.

“We really can’t afford for labs to be down, and we can’t afford for large numbers of computers to be down in individual schools when that is where the testing is to be done,” said Price. “There’s not an option of doing paper/pencil. We must do it online.”

As of Monday, all systems are running and the back-up computers were not needed. They will be purchased only if onsite computers need replaced to carry out testing.  

Employees have made adjustments at labs in the schools to ensure computers have the correct programs to allow the new WESTEST program to work properly, and everything is up to date, Price said.

The central office will perform site readiness testing on April 9 to check connectivity and ensure computers will be able to handle the WESTEST program when testing time comes.

“We’ll have a real good picture then what shape we’re in,” Price said.

Other items on the agenda:

• The board recognized Arch Coal Foundation recipients Mary Ann Mullenax and Adrin Fisher with certificates.

• The board also recognized Marion County’s 2014 Spelling Bee winners and presented them with certificates from the Office of the Governor.

• The board approved a motion to advance multiple personnel onto their second, third or continuing contracts with Marion County schools. Price explained that, in past years, the Central Office has had to riff younger employees and then rehire them in later years. This year, however, student enrollment has held steady, giving them a better outlook in terms of funding.

“Regardless, nobody likes to go through the riff process, and it’s unfortunate to have to lay someone off and tell them ‘We don’t know if we have a job for you next year or not. We have to wait and see.’ Luckily, for now, our student enrollment has leveled off to the point that we pretty much can count on what we’re going to have as far as enrollment, and that determines what the state gives us as far as funding,” he said.

• Four students were expelled for one calendar year for violating the safe schools act.

“Sometimes bad news can be good news, too,” Price said. “While it is difficult to make those discipline decisions with personnel and with students, it is necessary to maintain a safe environment for students. So, it’s an unfortunate thing that has to be done, but for the safe environment for the students to learn and our employees to work, those are necessary steps that have to be taken.”

Email Chelsi Baker at or follow her on Twitter @cbakerTWV.

Text Only
Local News
  • Farmington Poker Run Saturday

    The Town of Farmington Poker Run is scheduled for this Saturday.

    July 31, 2014

  • UMW Rally UPDATE: Roberts and Caputo arrested during UMW Pittsburgh rally

    After marching from the David L. Lawrence Convention Center to the William S. Moorhead Federal Building in downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, around 15 United Mine Workers of America (UMW) leaders were arrested.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fairmont bank robbery suspect in custody

    Officers from the Fairmont Police Department and the West Virginia State Police responded to an armed robbery Thursday morning at WesBanco in Marion Square.

    July 31, 2014

  • UMW leaders at rally: ‘We will stand up and fight’

    Several United Mine Workers of America (UMW) leaders spoke at a labor rally in Pittsburgh on Thursday.

    July 31, 2014

  • image.jpg HAPPENING NOW: UMW's Roberts says EPA rules will 'devastate Appalachia'

    During a press conference at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center United Miner Workers of America (UMW) president Cecil Roberts talked about the reason why 5,000 miners and their families are protesting the EPA's Clean Power Plan.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Alva Groves Family -ts.jpg After 63 years, remains of Korean War veteran coming home

    After 63 years, the remains of a Korean War veteran are coming home.
    Those remains are of Cpl. Alva Clifford Groves, of Four States, who lost his life during the Korean War. Groves will be brought home to West Virginia on Tuesday, Aug. 5.

    July 31, 2014 2 Photos

  • UMW to protest EPA Clean Power Plan

    Members of the United Mine Workers of America (UMW) will be gathering today in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to protest the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed Clean Power Plan.
    Mike Caputo, vice president of UMW International District 31, will be one of the many Marion County and North Central West Virginia members participating in the rally and march at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.

    July 31, 2014

  • Alecto executive to speak at chamber dinner

    The Marion County Chamber of Commerce’s 61st annual dinner is putting a spotlight on the future of Fairmont General Hospital.
    The keynote speaker for this year’s event, scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 13, is Mike Sarrao, executive vice president of Alecto Healthcare Services, the company that is in the process of purchasing Fairmont General Hospital.

    July 31, 2014

  • Korean War Veterans Memorial gets funds

    The Korean War Veterans Memorial in Marion County is closer to completion thanks to an allocation from the county commission.
    During Wednesday’s meeting, commissioners passed a motion to allocate $5,000 to the memorial. The money came from the county’s coal severance tax fund.

    July 31, 2014

  • Fairmont man faces heroin charges

    A Fairmont man has been arrested on heroin charges.
    Tyrell Anthony Smith, 24, of Fairmont, was arrested Tuesday by the Marion County Sheriff’s Department and has been charged with possession with intent to deliver heroin.

    July 31, 2014

Featured Ads
TWV Video Highlights
NDN Editor's Picks
House Ads