Citizens For A Better Norwood

Monday, July 14, 2008

NCS Board of Education meeting to decide school closing

NCS Superintendent Steve Collier told today’s Enquirer that the BOE “will hold a special meeting to discuss whether to close a building before the 2009-10 school year, and if so, which one.” The meeting starts at 5:30 p.m. today at the school district's offices at 2132 Williams Ave.

This past spring, the school district unveiled two options in a series of five informational meetings designed for parents and community members to give feedback on their preferences for either 1.) K-8 Option or 2.) K-6 Grade Specific Buildings Option . "We thought we'd get some clear direction," Collier said. "They were all over the place. In all five meetings, we did not walk away with any clear direction parents or community members want us to go. It did not create a clearer picture for the board like we thought it would."

Two factors are driving the need to close a building: declining school enrollment and the fact the district will be out of money by 2010. Mr. Collier attributed the loss of 100 students per year over the last 10 years to an aging community, houses being taken for development and the number of houses being rented by Xavier University students - not families with school-age children. “The Xavier factor is really a drain," he said. "They're trying to get their students out of those houses and back to campus to live. That may, in the future, create more space for families to move in."

Mr. Collier told the Enquirer, “A decision is crucial now because the district is going to run out of money in 2010. Closing a building could save the district $700,000, mostly in personnel costs, along with utilities and upkeep.”