Extreme Makeover Bob Jones Edition

Casey Marley, Editor

1996:  The birth year of many juniors and seniors at Bob Jones.  Like the upperclassmen of this school, the Bob Jones building is turning 18 this year as well.

Almost two decades old, the physical Bob Jones building has fallen into some disrepair.

“The foundation is stable but other than that it’s just really old and deteriorating,” said senior Kayla Daigle on the appearance of the Bob Jones building.

Kayla is not alone in the realization that Bob Jones needs some TLC. The condition of Bob Jones caught the attention of Superintendent Dee Fowler and the school board.

According to Bob Jones’ principle Robby Parker, the superintendent and school board allocated 20 million dollars in the school budget for Bob Jones to be completely remodeled.

“I’m very thankful to have a board that wants to make us a first class and…twenty first century school,” said Mr. Parker.

While school officials have taken note of fundamental repairs that are needed around the high school campus, some students believe that too much of the money is going towards “looks” instead of other basic needs.

“They’re updating all the wrong things. We don’t need a glass stairwell; we need better desks, and better books, they need to spend money for the classroom setting,” said Lindsey Solomon, senior.

The rumored “glass stairwell” or “glass spiral staircase” has become a polarizing topic in the halls of Bob Jones High school.

When asked if the rumors of the “glass spiral staircase” were true, Mr. Parker confirmed the speculation.

“Yes, that is true, it’s going to be really neat,” said Mr. Parker.

Raising more concern than the creation of the stairwell is its location: the Media Center.

“The media center will be completely revamped. It’s going to be Barnes and Noble style, with soft seating, a very relaxing type of area,” said Mr. Parker on the future plans of the school’s book and media hub.

In order to “revamp” the media center, sacrifices to library portion will be made.

“There were over 18,000 books in the library, and they wanted me to get down to 10,000 books,” said Mrs. Husky, the Library Media Specialist.

The 8,000 book decrease may come as a shock, due to increased library circulation in the past two years.

“I’ve increased circulation over 400% in the last two years,” said Mrs. Husky, and she has the numbers to prove her percentage.

According to Bob Jones Circulation Statistics, 4,423 books were in circulation during the 2012-2013 school year, in the following school year 7,543 books were in circulation: a 3,120 book increase made in one year.

Despite the increase in book circulation, Mr. Parker defends the choice to decrease the amount of library books.

“We’re not getting rid of books by any means….but a lot of periodicals and encyclopedia type things are not no longer necessary but are online…so a lot of the books like that are no longer needed,” he said.

Still students point out the need for physical books and the importance of a school library.

“A lot of people can’t go out and buy their own books, so if checking out library books is their only source of knowledge and entertainment than your lessening our education,” said Lindsey Solomon.

As Bob Jones moves forward to become “state of the art,” will the strive towards perfection leave behind students without access to e-readers and online capabilities? Or will Madison City provide ways for students to check out e-readers in order to access the books that have made the digital shift?