Decatur School Board will conduct survey on new elementary school options

Posted by Dan Whisenhunt April 12, 2017

A city schools of Decatur bus. Photo from CSD Facebook page.

Decatur residents will soon have a chance to weigh in on two proposals to reconfigure the city’s elementary schools to keep up with increasing enrollment.

The Decatur School Board discussed both of them at its regular meeting on April 11. The survey on the two options will go out soon.

The new options are:

1) Turn all of City Schools of Decatur’s current K-3 schools into K-2 schools, make the 4th and 5th grade academy a 3-5 school and build a second 3-5 school. Another notable aspect of this plan would be retaining College Heights as an early childhood learning center.

2)  Keep the current K-3 configuration while building a new 4-5 Academy.

The steering committee on elementary reconfiguration prefers the first option.

Tracy Richter with CSD consultant Cooperative Strategies said keeping College Heights as an early childhood learning center would mean Decatur Schools would only have to worry about building one elementary school instead of two.

Board member Garrett Goebel said Option 1 is an improvement over a previous plan that suggested making Oakhurst Elementary or Glennwood Elementary into a grade 3-5 school. He suggested making it clearer to parents why CSD is not considering making all elementary schools K-5, which is an ongoing debate in the community.

After the board gets the survey responses it will likely vote on a plan at its May meeting. Superintendent David Dude said it’s important that the board vote before the school year ends so there’s no perception that the board is doing something while the public isn’t paying attention.

“My guess is something is going to rise to the top as a recommendation once we get the feedback,” Dude said. “If for some reason we didn’t have [the feeback] by the May meeting, we might want to call a special meeting.”


About Dan Whisenhunt

Dan Whisenhunt is editor and publisher of Decaturish.com. https://www.linkedin.com/in/danwhisenhunt

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