Friday, August 8, 2003

CovCath classes wait 'til building crews clear out

Pat Crowley

Construction of a new $9.5 million school is forcing Covington Catholic High School to begin classes later than usual this year. Students return to the Roman Catholic boys school on Dixie Highway on Sept. 15. In past years, classes have started two to three weeks earlier.

The school had hoped to have students back in class by early September.

However, tearing down one school and building a new one on essentially the same site has taken longer than anticipated, said Don Buring, who oversees development and fund raising at CovCath.

"We'll have the first floor completed, which includes the cafeteria and some classrooms," Buring said this week. "But when students return, we'll still be doing work completing the second and third floors. Those won't be ready until mid-October."

So while it may be a little noisy as students settle back into school, at least they'll be back in school. Buring discounted rumors that the school will not be ready by Sept. 15.

"We'll be ready for students on the 15th," he said.

Because classes are getting off to a later start, days will have to be made up. CovCath administrators will draft a plan for "make up" days, Buring said.

Kitchen cabinet

Covington Schools Superintendent Jack Moreland, a Cold Spring Democrat and veteran political activist, has the ear of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ben Chandler.

Moreland, who has toyed with the idea of running for the Statehouse and still might in the future, is advising Chandler on education policy.

"Jack Moreland is a very good friend of mine," Chandler said. "He knows a thing or two about public education in Kentucky and has been involved very much in trying to see that it's funded better and that we have more even funding throughout the state. I talk to (Moreland) quite a bit."

Chandler said for advice on his education policy he also calls on other superintendents; members of the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence - a statewide education advocacy group; teachers; members of the Kentucky Education Association labor union; and "friends on school board associations."

A nicer angry guy

As part of its ongoing effort to boost attendance, Turfway Park racetrack in Florence has hired journalist and radio-talk show host Richard Skinner as its relationship-marketing manager.

Skinner has left print journalism, but will continue with Tom Gamble as one of the co-hosts of the bombastic sports-talk radio program, the Two Angry Guys, heard daily on 1360 Homer in Cincinnati.

Turfway has seen attendance drop by about half since riverboat casinos began floating in southern Indiana in 1996. According to track president Bob Elliston, Skinner's duties will include trying to boost businesses by developing new programs to attract bettors while working on the FasTrack Rewards program, which provides benefits to frequent customers and high rollers.

Ellistonis lobbying Frankfort for the legalization of casino gambling at racetracks.

E-mail Patrick Crowley at

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