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Get ready! Get set!

As the school year approaches Butler County teachers are working hard to make sure all elements are in place.

There are rooms to be cleaned, books to be organized and many other behind the scenes tasks that are a necessary part of preparation.

The time to get all of these things done is winding down. On Aug. 9 the students will return to the classroom ready to tackle the new school year.

At some county schools they are preparing for completely new faces. The incoming kindergarten classes will feature students who are taking the biggest step of their young lives.

McKenzie School Principal Randy Williams is expecting a large number for his school.

&uot;We’re looking at about 30 children in this years kindergarten class,&uot; said Williams. &uot;That is a pretty big class for us.&uot;

Williams, who said the school would house around 310 students through the twelfth grade, said parents and students would see positive changes in the appearance of the school.

&uot;They can expect a lot of changes in the building itself,&uot; said Williams. &uot;We have replaced a lot of things and repaired others. The hallways have been repainted and the lockers have been reconditioned.&uot;

W.O. Parmer principal Carole Teague said she expects a large number in this year’s kindergarten class as well.

&uot;Right now we have about 180,&uot; said Teague. &uot;They are still enrolling. They probably will be right up until the first day.&uot;

Teague said the total enrollment of the school should be very large as well.

&uot;We’ll be somewhere around 580 total,&uot; said Teague. &uot;We look forward to all of them coming back.&uot;

Across town at Greenville High School Dr. Kathy Murphy and her staff are also working tirelessly to ready for the 2004-05 school year.

An estimated 520-30 students will fill the halls of Greenville High.

Murphy said she and her staff plan to do their best to steer the students on the path to success.

&uot;We are really looking forward to having a productive school year,&uot; said Murphy. &uot;We just want to get ready so our students can absorb as much as possible.&uot;

The schools in the southern end of the county are also excited about getting started.

Georgiana principal Roland Pettie, who expects around 315 students when doors open in August, said the return of the students every year gives the school new life.

&uot;A school without students is a very lonely place,&uot; said Petty. &uot;We’re are ready to get the students back and help them learn as much as we can.&uot;

When the students return there could be some changes. Most of the changes will have to do with the dress code.

However, there may also be changes in the check out policies at schools.

All possible changes will be discussed at an Aug. 2 workshop held by the Butler County Board of Education.

The change that has gotten the most attention over the summer is the flip-flop style shoe. Many teachers and parents have felt this style of shoe creates a safety hazard for students, especially those of the elementary school age.

The Aug. 2 workshop will further discuss this topic and possible changes to be made.

Other changes expected for the upcoming school year are:

n No clothes with writing on buttocks.

n Shoulders and backs must be covered. No spaghetti straps or halter tops.

n No sagging pants.

n No short shorts or skirts. Shorts and skirts must be long enough to touch the fingertips when hands are placed at the sides.

All of the changes to the code of conduct and the dress code will be reviewed at the Aug. 2 workshop.

With all the work being done among county principals, the attitude was the same. To create the best environment possible for their students.