ROCKFORD (WIFR) – Deciding which schools to close under District 205’s 10-year facilities plan is not an easy process. In fact, picking up a plan to improve all buildings has been a challenge.
The facilities task force which recommended a plan to the school board explained why they chose the option they did and board members got to ask a lot of questions, including concerns over larger schools.
This is the first time the board is collectively hearing the chosen option which is an altered version of Plan ‘C’.
In the new plan, eight schools would close and two new schools would be built to replace Nelson and Kishwaukee as well as White Swan, Cherry Valley, and Thompson. Also, a new change, Beyer Elementary would turn into an early childhood site. If that happens, Bill Cullen of Mt. Olive Church which works with Beyer hopes staff members stay together.
“This past year, the climate is very collegial. People are working together, encouraging one another, supporting one another, they really have a sense of team,” said Cullen.
Administrators say they will try to move staff together to a new building. The board is expected to vote on the plan, August 12th however it will still need voter approval since it includes building new schools. When voters approved a referendum in 2012 for the district to sell bonds for the upgrades, the language did not include new schools. The district has to get that permission on the November 4th ballot.
The district is also asking for community input on the recommended plan. People can attend a July 22nd meeting on the district’s third floor board room. It starts at 6 p.m.