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The Monroe County Reporter
Forsyth, Georgia
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August 7, 2019     The Monroe County Reporter
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August 7, 2019
 

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Page 4C August 7, 2019 iR :9orter By Diane Glidewell news@mymcr.nef There are exalting plans for the William Hubbard campus on Highway 83. Plans are taking shape for a community park, a perma- nent home for the Monroe County Black History Mu- seum, a continued site for the growing Monroe County Boys and Girls Club, with the Central Georgia Boys & Girls Clubs using the cafete- ria kitchen to make meals for all of its dubs. Plans are to have space for meetings of groups like Monroe County Retired Teachers and special events like the Hubbard Alumni Association Annual Banquet in the auditorium. As the school system has sought community input and begun developing ideas for ways the campus can continue serving the com- munity and remain a legacy for William Hubbard and his contribution to educa- tion in Monroe County and beyond, there is still a rush of memories as the demolition of much of the building approaches. Even the middle school students who inhabited the halls and "-' --'dassrooms as recently as the 2018-19 school year find it a little hard to know that soon their building will no longer exist. Plans are to begin demoli- tion this fall ofthe buildings on the old Hubbard Middle School campus that suf- fered water and related mold damage. Summer is the lime for necessary maintenance and upgrades on facilities that aren't usually filled with students and staff. When that work is finished, focus will shift to changing the old William Hubbard campus to a new facility. This is bittersweet for the generation that knew the Hubbard School as its school while the facility served 12 grades of students from 1955 until 1970. For black chil- dren all of the little country schools out in the county, mostly in church buildings, were brought together into the one campus in Forsyth in 1955. They had to travel to town, but they could have better teachers, more challenging classmates and expanded opportunities. It was their school and their community, a great source of pride, until 1970 when segregation finally ended and a new era of educational opportunities and challenges began. The William Hubbard campus became the place where all elementary students in Monroe County began their public education journey. Later a new Samud Hub- bard Elementary School opened down the street and eventually the old campus became the middle school, the transition between the first and last years in public education. Abruptly in July 2018, after a very wet summer, damage to parts of the old Hub- bard building that lay below ground became apparent and the sixth grade students that had planned to be there were moved to the Banks Stephens Middle School campus with 7th and 8th graders; the William Hub- bard building was empty and quiet on the first day of school. As the day of demolition approaches, members of the dynamic Hubbard Alumni Association look to capture images and save memories of parts of the school that will no longer exist. On June 17, W'mifred Berr Annie Evans and Herbert Gantt walked the halls remember- ing many of the teachers to whom the classrooms had once belonged. In the front office Ms. Whitehead was the coun- selor, and Lena Jones was the secretary. That was where Flora Shannon larrell was, too. Down the hall were Left to right, Roger Onstott, Annie Evans and Herbert Gantt walk through the William Hubbard ish some of the buildings that are no longer safe be used gets closer. (Photos/Diane Glidewell) The stage, right, and the covered walkway in front of the school, above, hold lots of memories from the 1950's until the 2017-18 school year. the 6th grade dassrooms of Sally Mays and Myrtice Bell. Further down that hall were where the 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students had their classes, taught by Sadie Smith, Daisy Harvey and Dorothy Worthy. The 1st and 2nd graders were on the other hall near the front of- rice, and 7th grade was down the other way. Beatrice Singleton taught 7th grade. Mary Sewell, Shir- ley Henderson, James Love and Ms. Chaney were other teachers. Louise Hubbard, the principal's wife, taught music in the music room. Elizabeth Head was the li- brarian, and Santonia Lovett also worked in the library. Lula Dillard and Robert Anthony taught 8th grad- ers, along with Rubye lames Watts and Minnie Shepherd Peek. Maxine Foster was the teacher before Ms. Peek Over on the high school hall, Ruth Holloway taught typing, and Fannie Han- kenson and Betsy Daniel Huffman taught home economics. The catwalk covered walkway in the front of the building brought back memories to Annie Evans. She said it was the only cov- ered walkway at the school. She remembered tables set up on the catwalk for campus as time to demol- special events. Herbert Gantt remembered coming over to the catwalk to skate when school wasn't in session. Probably many more young skaters took advantage of the space over the years. "This is real sentimental7 said Evans. Onstott acknowledged that any part of the campus that is not on the drawings of the new plan is "probably going away. By Diane Glidewell news@mymcr.nef Monroe County Library Branch Manager Kimberly Clayton re- ported to the Library Board at its quarterly meeting on July 18 that the Summer Reading Program has been successful even though the library did not get a new Chil- dren's Specialist on the job until the day the program began. She said Jasa Brown has done a good job in the position even though she began at such a busy time. Clayton said she had to dis- continue the library's Story Time program in April, a month early, because of not having a Children's Specialist. She noted this affected the participation numbers she provided to the board. Clayton reported 1,753 visits to Monroe County Library during the quar- ter and 136 new patrons added. Of the new patrons, 80 are adults, and 56 are children or teens. The library recorded 1,178 sessions on public computers, 539 sessions on children's game computers and 2,009 wireless sessions. There were 101 uses of library tablets/ iPads and 31 uses of library laptops. During the quarter Monroe County Library circulated 4,135 regular items to adults and 5,655 to children and teens, for a total circulation of 9,790. The library added 199 items to its collection, deleted 85 items and processed 25 donations. The library had nine adult volunteers and one teen volunteer who worked a total of 112.25 hours, primarily on youth projects. '1 Clayton said Facebook and the Monroe County Reporter were the greatest resources in mak- ing the community aware of the Summer Reading Program and increasing attendance. The last children's program was July 24, and reading logs were to be turned in by July 31. Clayton said she is working on an outreach program to take the library into the community through Pop-Up Libraries. A temporary library will be set up where patrons who might not be able to visit the brick and mortar library can be exposed to library services and materials. She said her desire for the initiative began when she went to a meeting about the High Falls activity center and how it could best serve people in High Falls. She said Pop-Up Libraries will have a variety of resources, like iPads, and will let patrons check out items for 30 days, until the library returns. It would be an alternative to a book mobile. It will expand on the Tiny Libraries now in the county and will collaborate with the county on where it is most needed. Possible locations are Culloden, High Falls, Juliette and Smarr. Clayton said another project in the works is the library's website, which she expects to see active by January. "We need our own dedicated website for traffic and participa- tion" said Clayton. She found there is no hand- book for library employees and is working on creating one using the handbook for Monroe i County employees. Clayton is working on making it possible for library patrons to use credit and debit cards for such things as paying fines and fees, paying for copies and making donations. The board passed a policy, but it hasn't been imple- mented. She said she had a lot of requests from patrons to use cards for payments this summer; the library took in $1,400 last month. When someone does not have cash to pay something like the cost of a lost book or late fees, she said they often not only don't come back to pay fees, they stop using the library. Regional Library Director Natalie Marshall said systems like Square and Stripe have worked well at other libraries. Clayton thanked the library board, Friends of the Library and Monroe County commissioners for financing her attendance at the American Library Associa- tion meeting in Washington, D.C. She said she was able to buy $700 worth of books for $75 while there and get ideas for programs she would like to implement lo- cally. "The presentations were amaz- ing, especially the authors and speakers" said Clayton. Marshall said the Georgia Govemor's budget was signed early and looks favorable for library funding. It may increase to 35 cents per capita, and there are some funds for capital outlay projects. Applications will be accepted within the next few months. Funding for public tech- nology at the libraries passed at a higher level. Some of the funds are to support the 2020 census, in which libraries are a key player. Plans are for 80 percent of the census to be online, even though many to be counted do not have internet access. "They are formalizing a lot of work we've been doing over the last decade" said Marshall. She said the state is making a collection of 15,000 E-read items for children available statewide. These are audio books and e- books for K-4th grade and are available to anyone who has a library card. Monroe County Library bought a new microfilm machine, and Clayton said it is being used and getting positive reviews. She said the users like that they can zoom in with this machine and select areas to print. She said five state employees who were in the area came in to use the machine the preceding week. Clayton said she needs to do something with the old, outdated machine. The advancing knob is broken. If repaired, it will prob- ably break again. Clayton received three propos- als from companies for security systems for the library. She has been seeking a system since the library was broken into earlier this year. The costs are $699, $1,670 and $1,830, but the prod- ucts are not the same. "Having a system means I would be alerted before I got here the next morning" said Clayton. The cost to fix the library dou- ble doors after the last break-in was between $6,000 and $7,000. Clayton said she has not asked the county about funds, yet, and no action was taken by the library board. Jennifer Hudgins, president of Friends of Monroe County Library, said Friends is now storing books for its annual used book sale at Secure Self Storage at 51 West Adams Street for $58/ month. Books are taken to stor- age monthly after each Friends meeting. Monroe County Club- house has been reserved for the 2020 book sale. Friends awarded its first scholarship to a Mary Persons student at the end of the school year. Hudgins invited everyone to Friends of the Library meetings at the library meeting room on the first Monday of each month at 10 a.m. Clayton thanked Ginny Hudgins for the work she is doing as a volunteer intern go- ing through the juvenile fiction section and removing books that need to be discarded. Hudgins is a rising senior at Agnes Scott College. Clayton said it is hard to remove books from juvenile fic- tion because of many sentimental attachments. Hudgins has done a lot of research both in the Pines system and on the Internet to determine which titles to retain and what to discard. The discarded volumes will be sold at the Friends of the Library Book Sale in March. There was a shortage of titles in this category at the last book sale. Hudgins will continue to work on "weeding" until mid-August.