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Poplarville School Board sets commencement ceremony dates

Poplarville School District’s Board of Trustees set a date for high school graduation in June and a backup date in July.

Commencement is scheduled for Friday, June 26 at 8 p.m. at the Poplarville High School football stadium. The contingency date is Friday, July 24, also at 8 p.m. at the football stadium. The school district set a contingency date in case social distancing guidelines make it impossible for families to attend a June 26 ceremony.

In a separate matter, the Board of Trustees approved purchasing two new school buses for $87,500 from Waters Truck and Tractor on Monday. The district has approximately 30 buses that run daily. Based on how long a school bus lasts, purchasing two buses per year should ensure the district has enough functional buses, said Miller.

Previously, district administrators planned to purchase three buses, but it is unclear how the district’s funding will be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Board also approved plans to add a teacher academy to the Career and Technical Education program. Students were surveyed about what career fields they are interested in, and enough were interested in education to warrant a class. Through the class, students will be able to gauge their interest in becoming future educators, said Superintendent Konya Miller.

The Mississippi Department of Education will help with some of the costs to start the new class, said Miller.

In other business the Board:

—Revised the changes to grading policies to make the wording clear that final grade averages would be no less than the average of the first three terms to ensure students who need credit for completed work after the shutdowns will receive it.

—Passed an emergency situation transportation agreement with the Pearl River County Hospital and Nursing Home that in case of a natural disaster like a hurricane, the nursing home can use the district’s school buses to transport residents. The agreement is passed annually.

The next Board meeting will be June 8 at 6 p.m. at the district’s central office on Julia Street. The fiscal year budget hearing will also be June 8 at 5 p.m. The Board members have been attending the meetings via teleconference and it is undecided yet whether they will attend the next meeting via teleconference or begin attending Board meetings in person again.