EACS Wants Redesign Transition Finalized By January 2011

By John W. Davis

November 9, 2010 Updated Nov 9, 2010 at 11:12 PM EST

NEW HAVEN, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) - The East Allen County Schools Board has informally agreed to approve all district redesign transition plans by January/February 2011.

However, New Haven city leaders are holding firm to their idea to create their own independent New Haven school district.

"Our two main issues are the best education possible and fiscally responsible at the same time," passionately stated by New Haven Mayor Terry McDonald.

"Those are our two issues and those are the two issues we're going to stand up for," said the 11-year Republican Mayor.

"I think that the people from New Haven are discussing the closure of a high school and I'm not sure we're willing to go there," said East Allen County Schools Superintendent Dr. Karyle Green.

"I think what the calming place will be between our two entities is when they see that we're truly committed to enhanced academic programs," said Dr. Green.

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Meanwhile, Dr. Green said the district can't prolong making redesign decisions into April and May.

She said the earlier board members approve how the district will look the better.

Green reported that EACS is meeting with architects about undecided building construction and renovations.

Six elementary schools will close in the current district redesign plan.

They are Harlan Elementary, Hoagland Elementary, Meadowbrook Elementary, Monroeville Elementary, Village Elementary and Woodburn Elementary.

District leaders said they have received inquiries about some of the elementary schools that will close.

But before any deals can be made, those buildings need to be appraised.

Dr. Green said it is the district's number one priority to find viable community based uses for the properties.

District leaders hope to present that information to the EACS board on November 30.

Also on November 30, board members are expected to vote on New Haven Elementary School and Village Elementary School transitions.

The current transition proposal calls for K-2nd grade students New Haven Elementary School to attend the Highland Terrace Early Childhood Academy.

3rd-5th grade New Haven Elementary School students would attend Meadowbrook Elementary.

The approved redesign plan calls for turning New Haven Elementary school into a 9th grade freshman academy for New Haven High School students.

The current transition proposal calls for K-2nd grade students at Village Elementary School to attend the Southwick Early Childhood Academy.

3rd-5th grade Village Elementary School students would attend Prince Chapman Elementary.

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The pending transition at Paul Harding High School was also discussed Tuesday Night.

Two Harding parents addressed the board.

One of those parents spoke for a parent association and said Harding students should remain at their school while EACS creates a College and Career Academy magnet school.

Superintendent Green said that is highly unlikely.

But Green and board members agreed that all Harding students will not be forced to attend New Haven High School.

A specific plan detailing what schools Harding students will be reassigned to was not released.




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