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Yesteryear - Sept. 9, 2015

30 YEARS AGO -- Sept. 6-12, 1985

Posted: September 8, 2015 4:21 p.m.
Updated: September 9, 2015 1:00 a.m.

Truesdell tells Bethune Council high school needs to be preserved

A former South Carolina state representative and Presbyterian minister expressed concern Thursday at the Bethune Town Council meeting over the fate of the town’s high school, which he said has the lowest enrollment in the state.

Dr. Neil Truesdell of Bethune said the school may be in danger of closing in the future and something has to be done to save it from going under.

“It’s just a matter of time before it’s consolidated with another school,” he said, and although Bethune and McBee’s high schools have been long standing rivals, Truesdell seemed to prefer consolidation with them rather than another school outside Kershaw County. Truesdell said there was some talk a few years ago about combining the schools of Bethune and McBee, but that idea never got off the ground. Bethune would first have to join Chesterfield County -- seceding from Kershaw County -- to allow such a move.

“You’ll find more and more people moving and living in Camden if the school here is not what it ought to be,” he said. “If we’re going to anything, it better be done before long.”

The Bethune Town Council members, receptive to Truesdell’s concerns, were in agreement that something had to be done to either save Bethune High School by increasing enrollment or by considering a proposal to combine with McBee.

United Way campaign off to a rousing start

The United Way’s kickoff event at the city arena was a great success in terms of community interest and involvement, according to members of Kershaw County’s United Way.

About 300 people attended the function, billed as the “Great Chicken Leg” supper, to give support to the agencies funded by the United Way in 1985.

Booths, set up by each agency and manned by knowledgeable workers, gave people the opportunity to stop and ask questions, while the bluegrass music of “The Liberty Hill Band” played in the background.

Camden Mayor Bennie Marshall, the keynote speaker, called attention to the contributions the United Way of Kershaw County makes to the people of the community.

Using the Red Cross as an illustration, Marshall noted how that particular agency had helped the victims of the recent hurricane that hit the Gulf coast.

Stan Garber, president of the county’s United Way, said everyone seemed to enjoy the supper and the agencies were able to get the exposure they needed and wanted.

The 1986 campaign goal for the county’s United Way is $240,800, about $34,750 more than last year’s goal. The organization has received about $20,000 in contribution to date.

The Heat is on -- County schools sweating it out

Things have been really hot at Camden High School these past few days. And it has absolutely nothing to do with the school’s football team.

This heat wave is related to the weather, and it’s a scorcher.

Just ask Glady Smoak.

If you walked into her classroom last Friday morning, you probably wouldn’t have believed your eyes.

A thermometer told the story very vividly as it registered 112 degrees at 10:15.

And hers is not an isolated occurrence. Similar readings of 100 or more are common throughout the school during the late summer days of August and September and the pre-summer days of May and early June.

And when the weather is unseasonably hot like it has been for the past week or so, most teachers say there is little you can do it but sweat it out -- literally.

But on Tuesday, several hundred students reportedly walked out of class in protest of the hot conditions in the school.

School officials say the incident lasted only a few minutes and the students were told to get back to class or face disciplinary action. They say the normal school schedule was not interrupted.

There was an unconfirmed report the walkout had been planned for several days. Officials say they had no knowledge of that.

The teachers were sympathetic.

“I grew up on the farm and picked cotton,” Smoak, who teaches Spanish to grades 9 through 12 said. “And I can tell you it was cooler in those cotton fields that it is in these classrooms.”


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