Barrow students looking at late start in fall

WINDER - Barrow County students might start back to school a little later than usual following the summer break, but still earlier than last fall.

The Board of Education is expected to approve a calendar that will carry the system through the next two school years. An Aug. 15 start date is proposed to accommodate construction work being done on school buildings.

Students returned to school Aug. 24, 2007, following the summer break. The start date was about three weeks later than usual due to ongoing construction and renovation projects in many Barrow County school buildings.

The later start date proved popular.

"There was some discussion by the board to keep the later start date, but we have to start early to end the semester before Christmas and still keep the fall break," said Ron Saunders, superintendent of schools. "The high school teachers prefer to have the semester wrapped up before the Christmas break, and some students like to not have that hanging over their heads during that time."

Provider could help get Internet2 into schools

The board is also expected to approve a partnership with Windstream, a provider of Internet and phone service to the area, that will get Internet2 into the schools.

"Instead of us building a network ourselves, we would use their phone lines to get capability out to the schools," Saunders said.

The school system's contract with Windstream is set to expire in 2009, but the company has offered the school system a good deal, he said. Exact figures related to the agreement were unavailable at press time.

Board to consider elective course

Winder-Barrow High School officials will ask the board to approve an additional elective social studies course available to 11th- and 12th-grade students. The course, "Humanities," will focus on people's ability to understand the world and evaluate and express that understanding from an historical perspective.

SideBar: If you go

· What: Barrow County Board of Education meeting

· When: 7 p.m. Tuesday

· Where: 179 W. Athens St., Winder