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Calvert Combats Decline in School Enrollment

By: Carly Kennelly
By: Carly Kennelly

Elementary school kids in Calvert are at the center of attention.

Superintendent Morris Ogden believes if their school facilities aren't updated, the district will lose students.

Ogden wants to move the kids out of W.D. Signer Elementary.

"This {elementary school} was built in the late 20s and I think that says enough," said Ogden.

Ogden is proposing moving K-4th grade students to a newer facility that was once a private school. He also wants to move 5th and 6th graders to the high school.

Ogden feels it's the first small step to stop dwindling enrollment. First day attendance at the school last year was 293 kids, this year only 195.

Not all agree with the proposed location. Some say it's too small, rundown, and simply not the right place for their kids.

Some parents are even uncomfortable about their younger kids going to school with high schoolers.

"They're going to be messing with them agitating them or something happening. I don't think it's right," said concerned parent Sherry Kinney.

Ogden said from experience, it's just the opposite. The older ones tend to care for the younger kids.

If approved, the new facility will have 6 classrooms and Ogden promises to keep W.D. Spigner as its name.

"I'm hoping to build those grades up and then keep them because if you don't get them young they're not going to come back," said Spigner.

According to Ogden, over 30 Calvert kids have chosen to leave the school district.

He said if something drastic isn't done, others may follow.

The Calvert School Board still must vote on the proposal to move the students.

Ogden doesn't know when that might be, but expects to talk about the issue at the next board meeting.


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