PSD clos­ing schools Dec. 12 for cham­pi­onship game

♦ Rock­mart set to make trip to Mercedes-Benz sta­dium, pre-sale tick­ets avail­able now for $22

The Standard Journal - - FRONT PAGE - Staff re­ports

Foot­ball fans will soon be pack­ing up for a trip to At­lanta to watch the un­de­feated Rock­mart Yel­low Jack­ets play in the state cham­pi­onship game. Yet with the game sched­uled for the mid­dle of the day dur­ing the school week, how can stu­dents en­joy the game too?

Well, the Polk School Dis­trict has stepped in as of Satur­day morn­ing and de­cided that schools across Polk County will be closed on Wed­nes­day, De­cem­ber 12 to ac­com­mo­date the game be­ing played at 1 p.m. at Mercedes-Benz Sta­dium in­stead of this coming week­end, when it would have been sched­uled if not for At­lanta United’s fi­nale be­ing a home game too.

Ge­or­gia High School Ath­letic As­so­ci­a­tion of­fi­cials made the call to change the dates and push back five days be­fore Rock­mart’s semi­fi­nal win last Fri­day night over Call­away, and that prompted the clo­sure of school.

Su­per­in­ten­dent Lau­rie Atkins sent out a state­ment on Satur­day morn­ing that it would not be a day that stu­dents have to make up ei­ther, since the school dis­trict hasn’t yet been forced to close for any weath­er­re­lated is­sues in the 2018-19 school year.

“There­fore, we feel that can­celling school on Wed­nes­day is our best op­tion,” Atkins said in the state­ment. “This al­lows us to pro­vide the su­per­vi­sion needed for travel and for the sta­dium event.”

Polk School Dis­trict will be uti­liz­ing buses for the trip to the cham­pi­onship game, and would also have prob­lems get­ting sub­sti­tute teach­ers to cover for coaches who would be par­tic­i­pat­ing in the game.

She added in her state­ment it gives ev­ery­one a chance to en­joy watch­ing Rock­mart play against Heard County in the Dec. 12 re­match be­tween the two teams.

The two teams played ear­lier in the sea­son, but the game was called at half­time for a Rock­mart win af­ter a light­ning de­lay forced both teams back into the locker room.

Atkins did say in the state­ment the dis­trict does give its apolo­gies for any­one who ex­pe­ri­ences hard­ship over the de­ci­sion.

“It is the de­sire of the dis­trict to no­tify ev­ery­one early in or­der to make plans for all chil­dren,” she said.

Her state­ment ended with heart­felt hopes for Rock­mart in the coming days as they pre­pare for their his­toric state ti­tle game, the first since the 1950s.

“As you take the field at Mercedes-Benz Sta­dium, take in the en­tire ex­pe­ri­ence,” the state­ment read. “You have at­tained what ev­ery high school team in the state dreams to achieve. Your com­mu­nity is be­hind you and will be rooting you on to vic­tory.”

Those who want to know more about ticket sales for the forth­com­ing game can get pre-sale tick­ets at $22 start­ing on Mon­day through the high school, and they are $30 the day of at the sta­dium. Call the school at 770-684-5432 for more.

They are also avail­able at Race­way in Rock­mart, City Body, Rock­mart Florist and White­heads Florist.

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