Runnymede Elementary scheduled to open Feb. 2

January 13, 1994|By Anne Haddad | Anne Haddad,Staff Writer

Runnymede Elementary School will open Feb. 2, five months after the target opening date at the beginning of this school year.

Students will be out of school from Jan. 27 through Feb. 1 to allow Runnymede staff members to move into the new building and set up classrooms. All schools will be closed Jan. 28 for a professional day.

The Runnymede announcement comes none too soon for the school's teachers, who have expressed concern that their temporary quarters at the Taneytown Elementary School interfere with instruction, said Cynthia Cummings, president of the Carroll County Education Association.

"The teachers at the school are very concerned about the facilities at the [Taneytown] school," Mrs. Cummings said. "They feel the instructional needs of the students are not being met."

Physical education classes are being taught in hallways, she said, which could create health and safety problems.

"Special education teachers are testing in areas that are not conducive to privacy," she said.

Teachers can't use many of their materials because they are in storage or at the new school.

School officials first announced a delay last spring because the winter storm in March delayed construction. In December, officials said that Runnymede could not open as scheduled in the first week of January because of more wet-weather delays in November.

"All of the county's inspectors have been through Runnymede Elementary School," said Vernon Smith, director of school support services.

"There are two outstanding issues that will need to be addressed" before the county will issue a permanent occupancy permit, he said, but they are expected to be resolved by Jan. 28.

Those tasks are cleaning the kitchen and installation of a water softener, he said.

Superintendent R. Edward Shilling said he has obtained a waiver from state school Superintendent Nancy S. Grasmick for Runnymede students to miss three days of school.

The state and local school boards previously have allowed such waivers for other schools that opened or moved in mid-year, such as Mechanicsville and Sandymount elementary schools.

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