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Amanda Butterfield ReportingThe Granite School Board is deciding a tough issue -- the future of some schools in the district.
One major decision was made tonight, to rebuild Wasatch Jr. High with the insurance money they will receive from the fire, about $12.5 million.
The meeting was held to decide how to deal with declining enrollment in the Granite School District. One proposal was to close Granite High School, Wasatch Jr. High, and Hillview Elementary.
There are about 8,700 empty seats, costing the district an estimated three million dollars. Closing some schools would save some money, however, it appears Wasatch Jr. High will be rebuilt.
One Taylorsville mother we spoke to favors the closures.
Mother: “A lot of us on the west side didn’t have our voices heard because we didn’t realize that this issue impacted us, but $3.4 million a year to save really does. It impacts all the students in the district. And so we decided we need to speak out and let them know we do support these school closures.”
Meanwhile, many parents, students, principals, teachers, and members of the Friends for Education Coalition also attended. They proposed no school closures, but called for three new elementary schools to be built on the west side of State Street.
“But looking at a short term plan overlooks the projected growth in communities. We are seeing tremendous growth in our area, in our zip codes on the east side. Would we be closing schools just to reopen and readdress this problem again in three to five years? This will hurt our children and especially our communities.”
The board is still considering the fate of Granite High School.