LAKEWOOD, Ohio - All elementary schools in Lakewood will remain open, following a school board meeting Monday where members agreed to delay the closing of one building.
The issue came up in May, when Superintendent Jeff Patterson discussed closing Grant Elementary School to help close a projected a multi-million dollar budget gap for the 2013-14 school year.
But in August, Patterson presented data to the board that indicated enrollment would continue to grow, particularly at the K-2 level. At Monday's meeting, Patterson provided more data showing the district can't close an elementary school without the decision "significantly impacting" class sizes.
It was that data that convinced the board members that keeping all seven elementary schools open would be in the best interest of the students in the district.
"It continues to be a delicate balancing act to keep our community priorities intact (lower class sizes) while being fiscally responsible," said Patterson in a news release.
To help plug the budget gap, the district has implemented cuts, including reducing the number of media specialists from eight to one.
But with a $1.4 million carryover, it allowed the district to recall two media specialists and all teachers laid off at Lakewood City Academy.
The administration will continue to monitor operations going forward.
The Board plans to maintain operating the elementary schools until the district enters Phase III of the Facilities Master Plan.
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