Federal judge will decide Aliceville Middle School's future


    The doors to Aliceville's only middle school could remain open this fall. The Pickens County school board voted to reconfigure due to financing problems.

    But parents weren't taking the decision lightly.

    Aliceville residents led by the city council fought to keep the county's only remaining middle school in federal court.

    "All my kids went to school there," Gloria Williams said, "That's the reason I like the middle school."

    "I think they could have handled everything a little bit better," Candice Hall siad.

    The school did not have enough students to receive funding it desperately needs from the state.

    District Three Councilman Terrence Windham said the board submitted reconfiguration plans without surveying the parents.

    "The community was never involved in knowing the school would close until the last minute when the board tried to spring it on the community," Windham said, "The federal judge said she wanted us to get together with the board to come up with other ideas."

    Windham said nothing was resolved upon a meeting with the board.

    7th and 8th graders will likely stay in the middle school building this fall pending maintenance at the high school.

    Former student Etwana Johnson said she's sick of the back and forth, and fears a closure will cause parents to send their kids to other schools.

    "Where are all these kids going to go. The high school's not that big," Johnson said, "The elementary school's not that big. With the middle school closing, you're just going to have a big empty building taking up space."

    Superintendent Jamie Chapman said he is waiting on the judge's ruling. He will make no comment on future plans until then.

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