Maries R-2 board reschedules D.C. trip to 2021

By Roxie Murphy, Staff Writer
Posted 7/1/20

Maries R-2 School Board members last Thursday approved rescheduling the annual eighth grade trip to Washington D.C. until next year.

Trip leader Steve Vogt presented the alternative plan to the …

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Maries R-2 board reschedules D.C. trip to 2021

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Maries R-2 School Board members last Thursday approved rescheduling the annual eighth grade trip to Washington D.C. until next year.

Trip leader Steve Vogt presented the alternative plan to the board.

“We had a meeting last Monday and most of the parents were there,” Vogt said. “We had a good discussion about what to do with the trip and we have several different options.”

The group had moved all of their reservations to the first part of August this year, but they still had concerns that COVID-19 could come back in the fall and some attendees still weren’t comfortable with that time period..

“We talked about a lot of different options and what they decided on was convoluted,” he said.

The 2020 group will take their trip in the first part of June 2021 and the 2021 group will go at the regular time at the end of May next year.

“We are going to try to have two trips back to back,” he said.

There is at least one set of parents who will be attending the trip with their children.

“On a funny note, there was a couple of girls that didn’t want to go because certain times because it was going to be on their birthday,” Vogt said. “Why not be in D.C. on your birthday?”

Board President Joey Butler II asked if all the reservations would be able to be moved and if they were going to work with the group.

“The company said that they would work with us, but I haven’t contacted them since the meeting,” Vogt said.

The bus deposit that has already been paid is not refundable, but they said they would work with the group.

“The hotels are the same way, and places in Washington, some are open now and will be open in August, but some are still not open because of some uneasiness about the COVID, rioting and things like that,” Vogt said. “But it will go on to something else. They always do in Washington.”

The advantages of not going in August is that the Twilight Tattoo has already been cancelled this year.

“It will start back up the first part of May,” Vogt said. “The students will get to see that and it is literally the highlight of the trip for most of the people according to the survey, that’s about one of the greatest things that they enjoy because it is patriotic and outdoors.”

The disadvantage is that if they go in June, congress will still be on their Memorial Day recess, meaning the Capitol will be open but congress will not be in session.

“Last year we missed it anyway because we went to the House and they were already in recess at the time and then we went to the Senate and they had already went to recess, then the House came back and we just run out of time,” Vogt said.

He said they usually meet with the next year’s trip in May, but since school has been out, they have only sent out an informational letter.

Superintendent Dr. Lenice Basham told the board and Vogt that her only suggestion was setting up a separate account for next year’s trip so their monies didn’t intermingle.

“That way you keep all the money for the two trips separated,” she said.

Vogt said if parents or guardians have already gotten their security pass work for this year, they won’t have to do it again.

Director Dawn Hicks said she liked this plan much better than letting the kids go in August. The board voted 6-0-1 to proceed.

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