HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - The school bell is ringing again in Madison County, and there have been plenty of changes since students were dismissed back in May.
We spoke with Madison County schools spokesman Tim Hall live on Wednesday morning, as students were getting up and ready to come to class. He says everyone is ready to go to get the 19,500+ students back in the swing of things.
Former superintendent Matt Massey has left for a new job. Former New Market principal and Deputy Superintendent Dr. Mark Minskey has taken the job while the school board looks for a full time replacement to finish Massey’s term. “He is providing a seamless transition” Hall said of Minskey. “He knows what we are about, he’s an amazing leader who’s doing a great job, he is going to make sure everything runs perfectly that’s been set in motion to create an elite school system."
Speaking of New Market, it’s one of three schools to undergo major renovations during the summer break. The school was actually four buildings connected by outdoor breezeways. Now, those halls have been closed in and the entire school is one, connected building. There have also been major upgrades made to the student pick-up and drop-off location. In recent years, the line has sometimes backed up to Winchester Road.
There’s also been new floors installed and several classrooms have seen big upgrades. At Central, crews are working on a new cafeteria, new offices and new classrooms plus some big security upgrades. There are new keycard entry doors and camera systems in place. “Safety is the priority for everyone in Madison County” Hall said “some of the things we talk about, some we don’t talk about because we don’t want to show our hand.”
At Sparkman Middle and Sparkman High School, there is still work to be done. The crews are in the middle of a $17 million renovation to the fine arts center at the high school. “You’re going to see a lot of traffic, a lot of construction, it is going to be a little difficult. We realize these are growing pains, but they’re good growing pains because of the net result that’s going to happen.” The middle school has a new student drop off system and new carpool lanes. “The Sparkman project still has another year to go, so hang with us” Hall told WAFF 48.