Kansas City, Mo. – Last night, the Kansas City Missouri school board narrowly approved the plan to close 26 schools, and district headquarters. More than 200 parents and community members turned out for an emotional meeting.
Before the final vote, four board members tried to pass an amendment to the plan which would have taken nine schools and 1211 McGee off the list. They were out-numbered by the five who voted for the superintendent's plan as-is. Board president Marilyn Simmons was among those who voted "no." She said she's worried it will drive even more families out of the district.
"In light of this radical change, our district must work harder than ever before to rebuild and support our parents and students," Simmons said. "We cannot, and must not, take our parents for granted."
The plan closes Westport High, combines most other middle and high schools, closes 12 elementary schools, and moves early childhood centers into elementary buildings.
Superintendent John Covington says the closures free up resources for better instruction. This morning (Thursday, March 11, 2010), he unveils details of a plan he says will transform teaching and learning in the district.