September 23, 2014

Medina
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Technological hiccups complicate school prep at Claggett

The day before the start of school can be stressful, but the situation is a lot worse without phones and Internet access to schedules, online materials and presentations.

That was the predicament facing teachers and staff at Claggett Middle School in Medina.

A fiber-optic cable line broke Monday morning, disconnecting phones and Internet service in the building, Medina Schools Superintendent Dave Knight said.

Knight said the technology department for the district and contractors are looking into where the break happened and how to get it fixed as quickly as possible.

Claggett was the only school affected by the fiber break.

“It’s a No. 1 priority right now,” he said. “It won’t be fixed before the open houses tonight, but we’re hoping within the next three days.”

The two orientations scheduled for Monday evening were held — sixth-graders at 5 p.m. and seventh- and eighth-graders at 7 p.m.

“The staff is a bit frantic, but we’re looking forward to meeting the students and the families,” Knight said Monday afternoon.

He said Claggett teachers and staff will be scrambling without phones and online access to schedules, data and other materials stored online.

“We’ll be taking a step back in time and doing a more verbal sharing of information tonight, since teachers won’t have access to presentations and things like that,” he said. “It’s not the best thing to happen the day before school starts, but our staff is making the best of it and we’ll still have a good first day tomorrow.”

Claggett officials said the orientations didn’t encounter any significant problems.

“It’s like going back to how school was a decade ago before computers ran everything,” Claggett Principal Tom Hellickson said.

Associate Principal Matthew Mattie said the schedules were printed in the central office and parents picked them up in the cafeteria.

Extra staff and volunteers came in to help, Mattie said, adding that “people that have come in tonight have been very understanding.”

Contact reporter Katie Anderson at (330) 721-4012 or kanderson@medina-gazette.com.