The Livonia school board listens to public comments prior to deciding to close 2 elementary schools Fox 2 Detroit

The Livonia school board listens to public comments prior to deciding to close 2 elementary schools.

2 elementary schools to close in Livonia (Mich.) district

Enrollment decline of 1,500 students in the district prompts board to shutter two of its 14 elementary campuses.

Faced with a student enrollment decline of 1,500 in the last few years, The Livonia (Mich.) school board has voted to close two elementary schools.

The Detroit Free Press reports that closing Cass and Garfield elementary schools is expected to save about $800,000 a year in operating costs. The closures, set to happen at the end of this school year, will leave the district with 12 elementary schools.

The decision to close campuses stemmed from the findings of a district enrollment and building utilization committee.

The board's 5-2 vote to close the schools came after several parents urged the board not to shutter campuses and disrupt the education of students, especially those in special-needs programs that would have to be relocated.

Board member Mark Johnson says the decision was not easy.

"We have to separate the facts from the emotions," Johnson says. "The fact is, we're down 1,500 students from where we were when we started the bond back in 2013, yet we're operating the same number of buildings that we had when we had almost 18,000 students."

Video from Fox 2 Detroit:

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