Former Delaplaine Students Starting a New School Year in New Schools

DELAPLAINE, AR -- Nearly 250 former Delaplaine students face a new school year and new as they start off anew in different schools.

Kids from the Delaplaine School District are disbursed among 4 different counties and at least 5 different school districts.

Parent Mary grant decided to send her kids to Hoxie, which is nearly 20 miles away from Delaplaine.

"I have one that is six and one that is twelve and they have to catch the bus at 6:45 a.m. and they don't get home until five o'clock," said Grant.

Gaye Rickey taught school at Delaplaine and now teaches at Hoxie.  She said the decision on which school to go to was hard for many parents.

"There's no easy solution because Delaplaine was an isolated school district, that's why we had the isolated school status.  They were out in the middle of nowhere and there is no close school," said Rickey.

Over one hundred of the Delaplaine kids now go to Hoxie, and for these kids they're in a new school, a new bus route, new friends, and new teachers and it takes some getting used to.

"They're going to a different school trying to get used to it and it's just hard on them," said Grant.

Superintendent Dennis Truxler said they are doing everything they can to make the students comfortable.

"I tried to make sure I greeted each one and hopefully make sure they felt a little more comfortable by having someone greet them and see a smiling face," said Truxler.

For now three buses pick the kids from the Delaplaine area up.

"If we only sent one bus down there we would have kids on the bus for two and a half hours," said Truxler.

Truxler said the bus ride on the first day was longer but that should be cut down by 20 to 30 minutes as he drivers get used to the new routes.

But for residents like Grant she's worried about her community, and for many that could mean moving away from Delapline.

When the school year ended in May, there were about 250 students attending Delaplaine, 104 of those went to Hoxie, three went to Rector, eleven went to Pocahontas, seven to Marmaduke, and about 70 went to Corning.