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Schools need local safety line
Immediately upon being appointed to serve on the Hartselle City School Board, I began looking for ways to make our system better and safer. One idea was to install a hot line or tip line in the central office. The phone would be hooked to a recorder or voice message center--available to anyone 24/7.
The purposes of this line were many. Anyone (student, teacher, parent, or concerned citizen) could call to report illicit activities involving our school system. These should include, but not be limited to, gun crimes, such as a student bringing a firearm to school, violence, theft, drug problems, harassment of any kind, or any other offence relating to schools.
When I presented my idea to the then superintendent and board, I got the usual reactions: “Let is think about it.” “Is it really necessary?” “We haven’t had any problems.” “It costs money.” “The state already has a 800 line similar to that set up.”
To the reaction “Let us think about it,” I guess someone is still thinking about it because it hasn’t been done.
To “Is it really needed?” we continue to have violence in our schools.
To “We haven’t had any problems,” I have been made aware of at least two cases where guns were brought on school property--one of which the gun made it into the classroom.
Remember the rules: If we keep this quiet and nobody outside knows, then it didn’t happen. Right!
To “It costs money,” everything a system does costs money and I hardly think the $50 or so a month it would cost would bankrupt our system with a $25 million a year budget.
Finally, to “The state already has a hot line number,” no one at the board meeting the night it was brought up could give me the number or tell me for sure where it was even posted! The numbers were posted after this.
When discussed with the current superintendent (while I was still on the board) and board I was met with the same responses plus “The county is working on a program. Let’s see what they come up with.”
I have thought through this idea, reviewed it with school personnel, law enforcement and others, prayed about it, and feel it is more than worthwhile. Will it end all our problems? No. Is it a worthwhile project that needs to be done as soon as possible? Yes.
The health, safety, and wellbeing of our students is too important to wait on others or make excuses.
I feel that students, teachers, and others are much more likely to respond to a local hot line pertaining to events in our system. The time lost relaying a message from Montgomery to Hartselle could be devastating and cost valuable time in preventing a dangerous situation.
I was unable to accomplish this while on the board, so now I want to enlist your help. Call our board and superintendent and support this if you think it is worthwhile.
The time to act is before something tragic touches our schools. I will be happy to meet with and work with anyone on this project.
Ron Abercrombie
Former Hartselle School Board Chairman
The following letter was sent to the Assistant Coaches of the Hartselle 9/10 Tigers 1 and the Hartselle Enquirer.
Coach disagrees with writer
Editor:
As Head Coach of the 9/10 Tigers 1, I find the editorial letter troubling regardless of whether the letter was directed at our team or not. It was published anonymously from “Sports parent” by the Hartselle Enquirer.
Even if you believe some of the statements below are hyperbole or simply inaccurate, I am asking you to help me remember that parents want what is best for their boy. I Respect that. Please help me remain mindful of parents’ concerns and to take them seriously and please do the same yourself.
We ask our players to improve everyday and become “the best they can become”. We, as coaches, volunteers and dads are challenged with that same goal.
I appreciate the time and resources you have taken from your family and given to these boys and to helping me.
Johnny Hall
Head Coach, 9/10 Tigers 1
Chorus fortunate to attend events
Editor:
We would like to commend Mr. Don Pouncey and the Hartselle school system for allowing the HJHS Chorus to attend and participate in the Quad-Cities Choral Festival this week.
The students learned a great deal, and enjoyed themselves immensely. Many of our present chorus students will undoubtedly pursue their musical aspirations at the high school and college levels. Experiences like the Quad-Cities event enhance music appreciation while giving our students a chance to hone their performance skills.
Mr. Pouncey’s continued support of the chorus, and our students in general, is greatly appreciated by parents and students alike. We also commend Mrs. Michelle Reburn for her patience and tireless dedication to our children. Thanks to all who made this experience possible for another year.
Pam and Barry Ramey
Hartselle
Don’t like things? Get involved
Jeff Roberts
Hartselle

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