After listening to hours of public debate on the proposed school closings, Brady made the following recommendations:
- Delay closing Windmill Elementary School and Feinstein Elementary School at Sackett Street until a task force studies how to restore neighborhood schools at the elementary level.
- Postpone the creation of three K-8 schools until the School Department is able to thoroughly explore the pros and cons of this approach. The district currently has middle schools with grades six through eight.
- Close Feinstein High School and Perry Middle School, but keep Bridgham Middle School open. Brady decided to keep Bridgham open because the building is in much better condition and has superior educational facilities.
Feinstein High School teachers and parents, however, said that it would be a shame to close a school that has made amazing gains in reading and writing recently, beating the state average. They described Feinstein as a family, and said that the small high school has had great success in not only sending graduates to college, but keeping them there.
“When our grades went up, we never heard from anyone,” said Melissa Parkerson, a Feinstein teacher. “Our students have been torn apart. Please let them know they matter.”
That was my first school board meeting in a while...