The Cleveland board has decided to hold off on closing Collinwood High School, but has approved the closure of several buildings.

Cleveland board approves closing several schools

Nov. 20, 2019
The plan addresses declining district enrollment by closing 4 high school buildings and 5 elementary school buildings.

The Cleveland school board has approved a revised school merger and construction plan that closes four high schools and five elementary schools.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that the major change in the facility proposal was putting off the closure of Collinwood High School for at least a year. The proposed closing of Collinwood, a neighborhood fixture since 1926, was the most divisive part of a plan, which consolidates several uner-capacity schools as district enrollment declines.

District CEO Eric Gordon and the board have agreed to keep Collinwood open for a year or more while neighborhood leaders try to identify tenants for large open areas in the massive building, find ways to draw more students there, and develop a vocational program for manufacturing skills that could serve the neighborhood.

The district also held off closing New Tech West High School, a specialized high school with about 300 students.

Collinwood leaders praised the district for backing down from initial plans to merge Collinwood students into Glenville High School. And they pledged to work with the district to find a way to make the school an asset.

Key items in the approved plan include building a new Lincoln-West High School, merging the Martin Luther King Jr. career training high school into Glenville High School, and merging the Washington Park environmental studies program and Jane Adams career training high school into East Technical High School.

The plan also kills the renovation or rebuilding of six elementary schools that the district promised when it sought a $200 million bond referendum in 2014. Some could be done later if money is available, but those projects no longer will be covered by the 2014 bonds.

Plans to build the new Lincoln-West and to rebuild or renovate three elementary schools can now be submitted to the state, which is expected to pay for two-thirds of approved costs, and the design process can start.

High school buildings to close: Martin Luther King Jr., Jane Addams Business Careers Center, Washington Park Environmental Studies, Design Lab Early College.

Elementary school buildings to close: Walton, Willow, Iowa-Maple, Michael R. White, Case.

High school consolidations: Glenville to absorb Martin Luther King programs; East Tech to absorb Washington Park and Jane Addams programs; John F. Kennedy to house Whitney Young gifted and talented.

Build new or renovate: Lincoln-West High School; Clark, Marion C. Seltzer, Joseph M. Gallagher elementary schools.

Elementary schools promised to be rebuilt or renovated in 2014 bond issue campaign that will not see work: Bolton, Case, Denison, Iowa-Maple, Tremont Montessori, Valley View Boys Leadership Academy.

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