School board: Problem of extra students solved

Published 8:45 am Wednesday, September 17, 2008

COURTLAND—Southampton’s newest school found itself short of teachers on opening day, but administrators said recently they were ready for the problem and already had addressed it.

Riverdale Elementary School, located adjacent to Camp Parkway near Franklin, opened Sept. 2 with kindergarten classes that had 29 students each, school officials said during last week’s School Board meeting. Board members also learned that there were 72 pre-school students enrolled this year.

School Superintendent Charles E. Turner said an unexpectedly large number of students showed up on the first day without having registered ahead of time. The extra students caused initial class sizes at the school to swell beyond an acceptable number.

By the time the School Board heard of the issue, another teacher had been brought in and a classroom added, resolving the issue, Turner said.

“We do thank parents for their tolerance,” he told the board. “We needed time to see how the numbers were going to level out.”

He noted that there was already space available in the new building for the extra class.

A similar problem had come up with first-graders at Meherrin Elementary School, the School Board learned.

Administrators had expected to resolve that situation this week.

“It’s not going to be perfect at first,” School Board member Florence Reynolds said.