Archive for Thursday, October 7, 2004

Help is on the way at Baldwin High

October 7, 2004

Baldwin School District Supt. James White says help is on the way to ease the supervision load at Baldwin High School.

In late June, BHS Principal Allen Poplin fell from a ladder in his home and dropped 20 feet onto a concrete step. Poplin was taken by air ambulance to the University of Kansas Medical Center because of his injuries, most notably a broken femur and fractures to vertebrae in his back. He has been in a back brace and wheelchair since.

Doctors advised him that recovery would take up to six months and that he should limit his time at BHS. Initially, it was hoped that Poplin's part-time role and BHS assistant principal Bret Jones would be able to handle the supervision load.

That changed about two weeks ago, White said, as Poplin's recovery slowed.

"A couple of weeks ago, Allen wasn't healing as quickly as the doctors had hoped for and they advised him to lessen his work load," said White. "We talked about looking at an interim principal at that time.

"But, now we're looking at getting some help internally," he said. "We're looking at different options."

White declined to say what those options are, but said they do not include Baldwin Junior High School asst. principal Joe Gresnick, who was BHS principal for many years. White said Gresnick's services are need more at the junior high.

"We're close to getting everything worked out," White said of the alternative. "We hope to have it wrapped up by the end of the week."

He said the demands of supervision, especially with all the night and weekend activities, as well as the routine reports and other day-to-day requirements, had become too much for the current staff.

"Every night we've got those guys going to events," he said. "Bret was becoming stressed and we had to look at some options. Allen became frustrated, too. When you've never been sick a day in your life and then to have something like this happen, this has been difficult for him."

White also praised all of those at BHS who have done their part to make the most of the situation.

"It has gone smoother than we had any right to think it would," he said. "Everyone has chipped in and done whatever needed to happen."

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