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North County readies for first day of school

The North County School District has been in full gear preparing for students to return to classes next week.

Several summer projects are being completed, the floors have been buffed and teachers have been setting up their classrooms in preparation for the school year. At the high school, students have registered, picking up their schedules and Chromebooks and choosing their lockers. 

North County Superintendent Dr. Yancy Poorman said most everything is in place and they were wrapping up some of the capital projects before school starts Aug. 16. He said there were some technology enhancements, concrete work and door repairs or replacements.

“There are very few things left on the capital list that should be complete by the first day of school,” Poorman said. “One of the biggest things is we have the school resource officers in place. They are setting up their office, logging into their computers and loading the forms for reporting.”

Poorman added that faculty and staff is in place as far as positions. He said he has visited some of the schools and the teachers have been in their classrooms decorating and setting things up. They are arranging the desks, hanging stuff on their doors and are looking forward to meeting their students.

He said overall people in the Mineral Area value education. 

“…We perform usually very well when compared across the state and they look forward to coming back,” Poorman said. “They like to have their kids in school and the truth is, across the Mineral Area School Districts, we turn out a pretty good product.”

Poorman said when looking at the MAP data and comparative analysis, the MAAAs are really high compared to other areas. He stressed it is a good thing to be back in the school system.

“The other thing is, I think for the families everything runs better when you are in a schedule,” Poorman said. “…The first couple of days are crazy, especially at the elementary building. I never have failed to be amazed how it is a lot harder to deal with the parents than the kids.”

Poorman laughed and said the young students are ready to go, but the parents don’t want to let go and he is always tickled at that because you would think the child wouldn’t want to go to school.

“We have a very caring staff and our kids feel there is enough compassion and affection, so they look forward to coming back,” Poorman said. “The way we realigned years ago, so it’s all North County, they are going through with a class, making grade levels and get to meet all those other kids. They become very quickly, a part of a class.”

Poorman said North County is very fortunate to have numbers that are manageable in their class sizes, so the kids are comfortable. He said they aren’t putting them in huge classes and their average class size runs somewhere between 235 to 260.

“Well that is a manageable number when you break it up over 12 to 14 classrooms,” Poorman said. “We have a situation here where kids learn their classmates in the classroom and also learn their classmates at their grade level. It just makes them feel like they fit and belong better.”

He said homecoming is backed up a little bit this year to Oct. 5. But soon there will be football games on Friday nights and the volleyball team ramping up.

“Facilities-wise, the two I was in this week, Parkside and the Middle school, our custodial staff has done an amazing job,” Poorman said. “Everything is extremely clean and is shining. It just shines and it’s ready to go. I think it adds a little bit to the sense of pride for the kids at North County when they come back to school each year.”

He said they try to provide that and the custodial staff is awesome and they have some really good workers.

“It is labor intensive and they work together to get it looking good,” Poorman said. “The curriculum is in place, students are enrolled and we are ready for open house. Right now it looks like we are going to be within 10 kids of what we had last year coming in to kindergarten.”

Open house will be broken down by grade: on Monday North County Primary open house grades 1-2 is at 5 p.m. and North County Middle School open house grades 7-8 is at 6 p.m. On Tuesday, North County Primary Early Childhood and Kindergarten open house will be at 5 p.m., North County Intermediate open house grades 5-6 will be at 5:30 p.m. and North County Parkside open house grades 3-4 will be at 6 p.m.

The first day of school is on Aug. 16 and that evening at 5 p.m. there will be an open house at North County High School, followed by a Raider Rally on the football field at 7 p.m.

The North County High School Student Council sets up in the high school commons Wednesday discussing the upcoming school year and welcoming students as they picked up their class schedules.

The North County High School Student Council sets up in the high school commons Wednesday discussing the upcoming school year and welcoming students as they picked up their class schedules.

Renee Bronaugh is a reporter for the Daily Journal and can be reached at 573-518-3617 or

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