Committee recommends closing Farley and Reidland Middle Schools
McCracken County, Ky.- The Local Planning Committee in McCracken County voted to recommend an option last night that includes closing Farley Elementary and Reidland Middle Schools.
Out of four original options, it was labeled option one and other than closing the two schools, it also made use of the former Reidland High School building by dividing it into two schools. One side would house fourth and fifth graders and the other side would house sixth through eighth graders.
The committee's job is to look at the schools facilities, the conditions of the buildings and how many students are in each of them and make a recommendation that would made them more efficient.
Superintendent Nancy Waldrop explained in the meeting that the option would save the school district $1 million a year.
The second of two public forums was as emotionally charged as the first as dozens of parents and community members crammed into the school board building to voice concerns and hear the final vote.
The first hour about a dozen people took turns at the microphone. They talked about not wanting to see Farley close, about not wanting fourth and fifth graders so close to older students, and about the current conditions of Lone Oak Intermediate. The one consistent request was that the LPC wait to make any recommendation at all. They wanted more time.
Committee member Jill Wilcox was the first to make a motion to wait.
During discussion members talked about how a new LPC will be formed in 2015 and there will be a new superintendent because Waldrop is not pursuing a new contract. Plus, there is an election and there could be some new board members. Seven members agreed it would be better to wait than rush, but they were outvoted.
Committee members then discussed how difficult it was to make a decision based on the numbers and the facts when they feel so emotionally connected to the schools and their children's education.
After more than three hours, the committee voted on option one, but there was discussion about whether the option will actually play out by August of 2014.
The recommendation now goes to the McCracken County School Board Wednesday and then, if approved, will go to the state to be approved or rejected.