As a result of construction delays, St. Paul Lutheran High School students will get an extra week of summer vacation.

Students were initially scheduled to return from summer holiday on Aug. 16, but a delay in building supplies has postponed the start of school until possibly Aug. 23.

“We have had some supply problems,” said Andy Sherrill, the school’s principal. “Since we have done it all with volunteers, we can’t be too upset about missing our start date by a couple days. It hasn’t been our work crews. It’s just getting all of our supplies here.”

Just days after the end of the last school year in May the school began a massive remodeling project to add more class space for the growing school.

“We will have four new dedicated classrooms, a new commons/cafeteria which can also be used for a classroom as well,” said Sherrill. “We will still keep a conference room, which can be used for a classroom, but it will be relocated, and we will have a dedicated office space in front of the building. So, when we are done we will have six places where classes can be taught.”

According to Sherrill, the school is still waiting on doors and a new fire safety system to be in place before the school can open for the new year.

“We want to be sure the school is safe for our students, so postponing the first day of school is not really that big of a deal,” Sherrill said. “But, most likely we will not begin school until Aug. 23.”

When the school year does begins, the biggest change students and parents will notice, besides the new amenities, will be a new time schedule. Beginning on the first day classes will run from 8 a.m. to 3:10 p.m. with a 30 minute lunch.

This year students will see a couple new classes added to the curriculum. There will be a new freshman class, “First Year Experience,” which is a class that helps freshman transition from middle school to the high school.

The English Department will be offer two new classes. The first, Film as Literature, and second, Interpersonal Communication. The latter is a dual college credit class for seniors.

Once again, the Giants will be fielding several athletic teams this fall. According to Athletic Director Todd Varhalla, the school will compete this fall in cross country, volleyball, soccer and possibly fall baseball.

“We are exploring the option of adding fall baseball,” Varhalla said. “We have the numbers. We just have to make sure we register with the Missouri State High School Activities Association. I think we will add it, but obviously soccer is our priority and baseball is secondary.”

Hoping to make the flow of information more convenient this year, parents, students and staff can keep up with the latest news by signing up for the new text messaging service called Remind. Participants simply need to go to remind.com and follow the instructions, and begin receiving texts immediately.

Although the school is still in a state of disarray, Sherrill said he and his staff are still excited about the beginning of a new school year.

“We are a little sad that summer is ending,” Sherrill said. “But we love to teach, that’s why we became teachers. I am very excited about school starting and having the kids back.”

Craig Vaughn is a reporter for the Farmington Press and can be reached at 573-518-3629 or at cvaughn@farmingtonpressonline.com.

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