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Tuesday, October 19, 2021

St. Paul’s District Will Announce Plans to Close Schools

With too many schools and too few students, leaders at St. Paul Public Schools will unveil plans to consolidate next fall next week.

The goal is to reach at least 450 students in each elementary school – three classes in each class – and 720 in middle schools, so that each school can provide a baseline of support staff as well as arts, science, talented teacher experts. education and much more.

“Often, we say that we are providing a well-rounded education, and sadly, when it comes to implementation, it is not there,” Kate Wilcox-Harris, chief educational officer at the school, told the school on Monday. Told the board.

Schools with low enrollment don’t generate enough revenue to keep their doors open, so the district regularly transfers money from high schools, officials say. He cited the example of an unnamed elementary school that brings in $1.6 million in annual revenue but costs $2.5 million to operate.

Superintendent Joe Gotthard said the district would have to close and add some schools in order to “build the schools our students deserve.”

Unless they take action, the district projects that the number of schools with fewer than 300 students will drop from 10 this year to 19 by 2024.

Chief Operating Officer Jackie Turner said, “Doing nothing is not an option.”

final close rejected

The last time the district considered closing the school was in 2016, the school board rejected the plan by a 4–3 vote, the same night they fired Valeria Silva as superintendent.

This time around, Gotthard’s administration is taking the time to prepare the board for what lies ahead. A February facilities report identified 12 schools operating at less than 70 percent capacity, and in July the district warned of the need to close some schools.

In the last two weeks, the Board has spent five hours in special public meetings to know about the works involved in the scheme.

One of the board members, Zuki Ellis, whose votes saved the Gaultier primary, has taken a skeptical posture. It allayed complaints from community members, who wonder why administrators haven’t put more resources into the school, which still had just 208 students at the end of last year.

“That’s what I hear. I have no answer,” she said.

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
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