The current school board proposal is a thinly veiled attempt at consolidation. Read the bond proposal carefully and look at the distribution of monies to various elementary schools. There is no mention of monies for deferred maintenance/life safety issues in city schools that have been neglected for the last 30 years or so.
Kent Kultgen has said that he expects to close Kessler, Hawthorne and Bryant schools. He also plans to change the to-be-renovated Central school into an administrative building in five years. That is after spending $8 million in renovation!
I agree that expansion of valley schools needs to be done, but closing of so many city schools is not something that many parents living in the city, who value neighborhood schools, will let happen.
The only way a school bond can be successfully passed is if there is a comprehensive, transparent plan for all schools -- elementary through high school. Any plans for closure should be out in the open. Parents would be more amenable to closures if there is full disclosure in the first place and definitely not closures at the mass level Kultgen is planning.
We are left guessing what he plans to do after closing all these elementary schools. Bus city kids to valley schools? Refurbish CR Anderson Middle School and make it into a mega elementary school? Then what happens to CR students? Will they get a new middle school? Then obviously Helena Middle School needs renovation as well. Then how about high schools?
This is too expensive of a bond to stand alone without thought to all the other pieces of the puzzle, in other words a comprehensive vision/plan for all levels -- elementary, middle and high.