KEYSER - Parent drop-off at Keyser Middle School is an “imminent disaster waiting to
happen,” according to parent Shawn Snyder.

By Marcia Conrad
Tribune Correspondent
KEYSER - Parent drop-off at Keyser Middle School is an “imminent disaster waiting to
happen,” according to parent Shawn Snyder.
Snyder addressed his concerns to the
regular meeting of the Mineral County Board of Education on Tuesday, Dec. 19, and made an impassioned plea for the board to take action to alleviate the problem.
Although there is supervision for students coming into the building, there is nothing along the pull-off area on Southern Drive to make sure parents and other drivers follow
the rules and use caution for the safety of the students.
Board members Lara Courrier and Tom Denne both said that they have seen incidents while dropping off students as well. One problem occurs when parents pull off on the wrong side of the street, requiring students to cross the busy street and drivers do not adhere to the posted 15 miles per hour speed limit.
Another problem arises when parents pull out too fast from the pull-off area and don't watch for students walking to
the entrance of the school.
Snyder told the board that he had spoken to John Droppleman, transportation director, and with Eric Murphy of the Keyser City Council about the problem and possible solutions. Murphy suggested that widening the pull-off and erecting some barriers from the street might be an option. Another suggestion was to put some sort of authority figure along the drop-off spot to make sure parents follow the rules and other drivers exercise caution and follow speed limits on the street.
Snyder says that according to Dr. Holler at the Middle School, about 200 students are dropped off on Southern Drive in about a 15-30 minute time period in the
mornings, starting at about 7:30, about the same time that people drive up or down the street to get to work.
The board agreed that something needed to be done and superintendent Shawn Dilly added that “there is no price on the life of a child.”
The board also considered administrative guidelines for use of county facilities by community organizations. Policy 3131, reduction in force of classroom teachers and
other professional personnel, was amended. The change was needed as the positions of school instructional specialist were added. The board also approved adding an itinerant
classroom aide/paraprofessional at Wiley Ford Primary School.
Mineral County PreK/Headstart Policy Council minutes and financial reports were approved. Changes
were also made and accepted to the Wellness Policy. Guidelines were approved for snacks brought for celebrations at school.
In other personnel matters, the board considered transfers for several positions and leaves of absence for other employees. Volunteers were approved for Fort Ashby
Primary School, Fountain Primary School, Frankfort High School, Frankfort Middle School, Keyser High School, Keyser Primary School, and Wiley Ford Primary School.
One student received approval to transfer from Mineral County Schools to Hardy
County Schools, immediately with the 2017-2018 school year. A home-schooled student was granted permission to attend classes at Mineral County Technical Center.
A scheduled executive session for disciplinary action for a student was canceled.
In further action items, the board approved the purchase of four new buses.
Mineral County was recently one of ten counties to be granted permission to try a bus with a gas engine. The other three will be propane engines. The transportation
department will also be receiving transfinder routing software. With this software, the hope is that scheduling will be more efficient than doing it with pen and paper.
The next board meeting will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018.