RPS 205 Plan Revisions May Save Schools

- EDITOR'S CLARIFICATION:  Rockford school officials want to clarify that Beyer Elementary was never on the list for closure, but rather was recommended in the initial plan to become an Early Childhood Center.  The story has been corrected to reflect that.

ROCKFORD - Beyer Elementary School was slated to become an Early Childhood Center until the facilities task force committee revised the school closure plan. "The facility task force determined that it would be in the benefit of the district to keep those schools open so we would not have to put an addition on to Conklin." said Todd Schmidt, Chief Operating Officer of Rockford Public Schools

Members of the facility task force team are members of the community who assist the Rockford Public School district with decision making in the RPS 205 school closure plan, which is part of a $250,000,000 project that will build two new schools in the district.  It will also add in renovations to the run down schools and close eight elementary schools. But, the RPS 205 task force has revised their plan for school closures and has slated a plan that would save one elementary school from getting shut down.

One new school would be for Kishwaukee and Nelson students, who would be consolidated into one building. Thompson, White Swan, and Cherry Valley would also be combined into a new school as well. “Some more students into the Nelson and Kishwaukee schools -- put a little bit more into those, and add students into Riverdahl, and take students to Lathrop, so we can make an early childhood center.”

These new plans will not take effect until after the 2014-2015 school years. "With all of the community meetings that we have had, we went out there, and it is like, these are the three plans that we have right now. These may not necessarily be the one that is recommended to by the board based off of this input." 

It’s not the final call, but Monday’s revision by the facilities task force will play a big role in the school closing plan in District 205.

The decision is ultimately up to the Rockford School board.

The plan will go before the board in a first reading on July 8, 2014 and will be voted on August 12, 2014. The next meeting is July 22, 2014 at the Administration Building, 501 7th Street. The plan will go before the school board for a vote on August 12th.

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