Cheboygan parents voice safety concerns over school closing
More than 150 parents and staff members filled the Cheboygan School commons on Wednesday night to learn more about the Cheboygan Schools proposal for district reconfiguration.
The proposal includes closing West Elementary School and creating a kindergarten through second grade building at East Elementary. The third and fourth graders would move to the middle school which currently serves fifth through seventh graders.
At Monday's meeting the move to combine younger students into the middle school created concern among parents. Ashley Rhode says it's those concerns that have her wondering if it's the best move for students. "I am concerned about my daughter going to school with way older children. She'll be in third grade and she'd be going to school with seventh graders. That's a big difference" says Rhode.
Safety concerns aside, many parents expressed their understanding of the district's hardships, which include declining enrollment numbers and less state funding. "I know that they'll do the best for my children and they have to this day. It's still a great school district. I know they have to make tough decisions" explained Marianne Ridings, whose child will be impacted by any move.
The superintendent addressed the parents concerns, explaining that every effort would be made to keep grade levels separated. At the conclusion of the meeting, the superintendent encouraged parents to walk the halls to see if they could envision the building working as an intermediate school.
Superintendent mark dombroski says the board plans to make a decision at their meeting next Tuesday. If the proposal passes, changes would go into effect this coming fall.