After losing hundreds of students to charter schools, the Brockton (Mass.) school district is considering closing a middle school.
The Brockton Enterprise reports that the Brockton School Committee is looking at several cost-cutting options to address a budget deficit of $8 million to $9 million. City leaders and school officials say the budget shortfall has resulted from inadequate state funding and the loss of students to charter schools.
Brockton School Committee Vice Chairperson Thomas Minichiello says he is leaning toward the gradual closing of North Middle School for a multiyear renovation.
The school district says other options being considered include closing Ashfield Middle School and dispersing its students to the other middle schools, which would save $2.1 million annually; or moving middle school grades from the Davis K-8 School, to South Middle School, which would save $417,800 a year.
Minichiello says the potential changes to middle schools are mostly the result of losing more than 300 middle school-age students to charter schools. The New Heights Charter School in Brockton opened in 2016 starting with grades six through eight.
A decision on a possible school closure will be made within a month or so.
Last week, teachers, students, school committee members and others rallied at the State House in support of a bill that would revise the state’s formula for local school aid. If the city of Brockton doesn’t get relief through the proposed change to state law, it will continue pursuing an equity in education lawsuit against the state, Minichiello says.