School board happy with new football scoreboard

Published 2:03 pm Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The new scoreboard at the Picayune Memorial High School stadium drew praise from members of the school board for the Picayune Municipal Separate School District as they handled a short list of routine matters at a noon board meeting yesterday.

“Everything works,” said board member Harvey Miller, in reference to the previous scoreboard, parts of which didn’t work as it aged. Members also were pleased with the landscaping that went around the sign posts and with a large gate that had been put in the fence in the end zone in order to get the sign onto the field for installation. The new gate was used by the band at the last home game and board members commented that using it helped relieve congestion in the concession stand area, which the band previously had to pass through to get onto the field.

Superintendent Dean Shaw said that only the day before the gate was put in that band director Tim Garrett had asked for a better way to get the band onto the field and that when it became evident that a portion of the fence would have to be taken down to accommodate the new scoreboard that maintenance director Arnold Smith suggested installing the gate.

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The board tabled donating the old scoreboard to the City of Picayune for its use at Friendship Park because the Coca-Cola company, which provided both the old scoreboard and the new scoreboard to the district told board members that it also was providing scoreboards for Friendship Park and another sports complex at McNeill that the board to which the board also had considered donating the old board.

“It’s (the scoreboard) the property of Coca-Cola anyway,” Miller told other board members.

He said the old board will be taken by Coca-Cola and scrapped because it is too expensive to repair.

The board also voted to wait until its Oct. 7 to consider using the old lighting taken from the stadium and using it to light a practice field behind the high school science building.

Miller said he wanted to know what groups would use that field in the evening for practice before he voted to spend any money on it.

The matter came back before the board Tuesday because the district had been notified by the low bidder on the project, Webster Electric, that the bid it submitted prior to the board’s last meeting was good only through Sept. 26 and that the cost would go up after that.

Board chairman Ginny Dodd reported to the board that renovations in the high school band hall looked good and that all that remained was the installation of the acoustic tile. She noted that she was pleased that the district had taken what started as a problem — getting the new scoreboard onto the field — and turned it into an opportunity to make an improvement. Dodd and other board members also praised the administration for beginning to recognize students’ academic achievements during breaks in the game such as at end of quarters when teams switch ends of the field.

On business matters, the board:

— Approved personnel matters.

— Approved sole source purchase orders and out-of-state travel.

— Approved grant acceptance training for Early Head Start.

— Approved professional development for infants and toddlers, Early Head Start.

—Went into executive session on a personnel matter.