Karma or Dharma? Part 1..A History Lesson

12:45 AM Edit This 0 Comments »
I'm so mad I could puke. Here's the short of the long story. When we moved here (4 years ago) our elementary school's were a small K-1 and a larger 2-5. I loved this idea...individual attention, small town environment with a county funded education. Great!

Great until they decided that the building the k-1 was housed in was/should be/will be condemned. The toilets constantly backed up and overflowed into the school because of the water situation, the foundation was separating from the building, the school had no central air and limited heat that constantly broke down and forced early or daily school closings, and the roof leaked. To name a few. It came down to fix it or close.

In 2000, about a year before we moved here, the citizens of this community, voiced strong support for keeping the school open. An alternate water source was found, thanks to a local benefactor, who purchased five acres of land contiguous to the school with a working well; they offered an easement to that water as long as the building is operated as a public school. Following further study the School Board voted in April 2001 to renovate our school and reconfigure it to a kindergarten through fifth-grade school.

Renovations were scheduled to begin in 2004, but a significant increase in estimated cost placed the school's future on the discussion table again ( this is where I came in...my son, then, in Kindergarten, now 1st grade) Due to health and safety concerns specifically related to the water system, students and staff were temporarily housed at the current 2-5 school for school years 2004-2005 and 2005-2006. (Our current status)

From June to September 2004 the community (specifically this older group "Friend's of Our School" former students and teachers of said school back in the mid-late 60's) fervently expressed their desire to preserve the school as a neighborhood school and as a part of the African American heritage in the Northern part of the county and urged the School Board to renovate the school and open it as a kindergarten through fifth-grade school .

Finally, the County agreed to do something about it. This local group fought tooth and nail to keep the school open as a school and not an administration building or tear it down and build a new one. This was ONLY a fight based on the historical fact this was the only school left standing in the state that first opened its doors to the African American students in 1963, replacing a number of dated and smaller community schools throughout the area. In 1969, when schools in our county were integrated, the school opened its doors to children of all races. This group wanted to preserve the history of the building, as it should, and keep the school open. Done.

Now that renovations are due to be completed next Fall, we are struggling with where to put the kids, where to put the teachers and where the $ is going to come from to pay for all the programming that will bring our newly renovated school into the present and up to par with the others in the county.

And that my friends, will be tomorrow's addition.

Okay...if you've made it this far...thanks. Til tomorrow then.