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      New Columbia high school stuns students

      The Columbia Public School Districtâ??s new $76 million high school opened on schedule and on budget.

      It was the first official day of classes for Columbia Public School students.

      The new school year brings many changes to the district including new start times, new class configurations and a new high school.

      The Columbia Public School District??s new $76 million high school opened on schedule and on budget. Muriel Williams Battle High School officially opened without any major problems.

      Students arrived to find their Spartan team mascot riding a horse as they prepared for the new school year. Students were amazed by their new surroundings that included a large commons area. James Pittman moved from Fulton to Columbia and was overwhelmed by the size of his new high school.

      Pittman said, ??It??s nice. It??s huge. I like the gym and the football field that you can see through the windows. It??s nice.??

      Junior Markita Townsend attended Hickman High School last year.

      Townsend said, ??I guess it??s newer. I guess I will have different opportunities to do things.??

      Battle High School students will soon carry iPads instead of textbooks. Students can??t use the devices until their protective cases arrive on September 15.

      Battle High School Principal Dr. Kim Presko said, ??They play with iPads and electronic devices everyday. I think that??s where we have to move as an educational system.??

      School district administrators will be working this week to resolve any issues related to class sizes and transportation. The most common problem was making sure students had the correct class schedules.

      This year??s unofficial total enrollment for the Columbia Public School District is 18,136. The official enrollment number is computed on the last Wednesday of September as required by law.

      Students new to the Columbia Public School District continue to register for classes.

      Administrators anticipate that new registrations will continue over the next several days.