Maries R-2 returns with 734 enrollment, 16 virtual learners

By Roxie Murphy, Staff Writer
Posted 9/9/21

BELLE — Maries County R-2 Superintendent Dr. Lenice Basham said Friday that enrollment numbers for pre-k through twelfth grade are at 734 districtwide three weeks into the 2021-22 school year, …

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Maries R-2 returns with 734 enrollment, 16 virtual learners

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BELLE — Maries County R-2 Superintendent Dr. Lenice Basham said Friday that enrollment numbers for pre-k through twelfth grade are at 734 districtwide three weeks into the 2021-22 school year, and the first day went well.

“It was exciting to see the student’s smiles and joyful voices back in our buildings,” Basham said. “The end of the day-transportation was a little slower than normal. We wanted to make sure all our Kindergarten students were on the correct bus and it took a little longer than it will even next week.”

As the district enters its 18th month dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, administrators are able to offer a smoother transition between health safety and in-seat learning.

“Take a look at the Safe to Return Plan on the district’s main page (Mariesr2.org),” Basham suggested for anyone who wants to review the district’s safety plan. “I think my biggest concern is keeping our students and staff healthy and in school. We have no idea what the future will bring. We are focused on doing what we can to keep students in-seat and healthy as we go throughout the year.”  

The school remains mask-optional. Parents and students will be made aware of changes to the plan via email, information added to the district’s website and new MariesR-2 app.

All but 16 of the 734 students enrolled in the district this year are participating in-seat. 

“I am most excited to see the growth our students will make again this year,”Basham said. “We have an amazing staff and I am excited to see the positive impact they have on our students and families. I think it is going to be an amazing year!”

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s (DESE) decision to allow outside virtual learning options to be part of the curriculum expired, but Missouri Course Access and Virtual School Program (MOCAP) is still available.

“I want to thank everyone in our community for the sacrifices they have made throughout the last 18 months to keep our students in school and learning together,” Basham said. “We are appreciative that everyone is looking out for the health of our students. I am so very proud to work with this district and this community!”

To review COVID-19 cases or quarantines within the district, visit Mariesr2.org and review the COVID-19 Dashboard.

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