Lamar County superintendent to request extension for Baxterville Project vote

Lamar County superintendent to request extension for Baxterville Project vote

BAXTERVILLE, MS - Lamar County Superintendent Tess Smith has requested an extension on the proposal for the Baxterville Project.

The Baxterville project is a proposal to move Baxterville students grades sixth to eighth to Purvis Middle School.

The Lamar County School Board was originally going to be presented the proposal on Oct. 1, but now Smith has asked for an extension for further research.

Her letter states, "I have received many calls and emails. I appreciate the input and want to ensure that all data gathered is reviewed and made available to the public."

Smith said the plan is to interview staff, students and parents as well as graduates and non-graduates. Smith said all aspects of the plan will be considered from athletics to transportation.

This decision stems from many community members expressing concern after they heard a school board meeting was held on the subject Monday night.

Smith was concerned about drop out rates, and believes the transition would not happen for at least another two years, if voted on.

"This process will not save money, in fact it will probably cost the district money, but again, if that's what is best for students, that's what we need to do," Smith said.

Members of the community took turns expressing concerns at a parent meeting Tuesday, citing the past issues between Baxterville and Purvis students. Some referenced that kids are known as the "Baxterville ones" or called on by the phrase "Hey Baxterville."

Other topics addressed were the potential loss of jobs at the school, closing the school in the future or building a separate high school for the Baxterville community.

A new date for the vote has not been set.