Breakfasts and lunches will be available in Enterprise for families with children between the ages of one and 18 during the state-mandated school system shutdown that begins after close of school Wednesday, March 18.
At the meeting Monday, March 16, the Enterprise Board of Education approved the free meals for families with children between the ages of one and 18 beginning Thursday, March 19.
As the first cases of the COVID-19 strain of coronavirus in Alabama were confirmed, Gov. Kay Ivey declared a State of Emergency at a press conference in Montgomery March 13 and announced the closure of all schools K-12 in the state starting at the end of Wednesday, March 18. Schools could re-open on April 6, she said.
In addition, all athletic events after March 17 were cancelled—including practices, weightlifting and any other athletic activities. According to the AHSAA, a decision will be made regarding the remainder of the regular season and playoffs for spring sports before April 6.
Per United States Department of Agriculture regulations, children must be present in order for the meals to be provided. The program is solely for the pick up of meals and meals will not be consumed on site, according to Enterprise City Schools Child Nutrition Program Director Julie Harmon.
“We encourage families to continue to be proactive in reducing the risk of COVID-19 by not congregating at the sites once meals have been distributed,” Harmon said. “Continue to wash your hands often and stay at home if you are sick.”
Meals may be picked up in front of the Old Coppinville School on North Ouida Street, Pinedale Elementary School on Plaza Drive and Rucker Boulevard Elementary School on Regency Drive between 11 and 11:30 a.m. beginning March 19.
Meals will be delivered by bus or van to —and may be picked up at—Faith Community Church on Private Drive, Westview Baptist Church on Damascus Road, Dixie Drive Apartments on Dixie Drive, Endale Estates on Alabama Highway 134, Pleasant Grove Missionary Church on Coppinville Road and College Street Elementary School on West College Street.
More information can be obtained by calling (334) 347-7572 or by emailing Harmon at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Students will “hopefully” return to school April 6, said Enterprise City Schools Superintendent Greg Faught, encouraging families to check the school system’s website frequently for updates. “I want our students to have a safe, fun and restful break. I hope they take advantage of this time to recharge and come back on April 6 ready to finish strong.”
“As a physician, the unknown is what is scary for lots of folks,” said Enterprise Pediatrician and Board of Education President Dr. Danny Whitaker. “I think everything is being done to control the spread of this virus.
“Obviously in other countries it has had some high fatality rates and it could possibly, at some point, become overwhelming to our health care system. I don’t think it will,” Whitaker said. “Hopefully the actions that will be taken by all these different organizations trying to limit community spread is going to help. We have to just be patient and just work through this over the next several weeks and hopefully it will turn out to not be nearly as dangerous as some people fear.”
In unrelated business, the EBOE renewed the contracts of Dauphin Junior High School Principal Judy Thomas, Coppinville Junior High School Principal Debbie Hope, Rucker Boulevard Elementary School Principal Jon Steed and ECS Temporary Alternative Placement Principal Ame Beckham.
The next meeting of the EBOE is April 28 at 6 p.m. in the Central Office Building Conference Room. The meeting is open to the public.