The fight continues for community members, parents and students at Sewell Elementary near 5th and Craycroft. Tonight a large group met at the school to discuss the possible closure.
The Tucson Unified School District is making plans to close 14 schools including Sewell. To fill a $17 million budget gap. The school board needs to balance the budget. They also need to be fair to all areas of the district and try to protect the quality of education for all students.
The cafeteria at Sewell was filled with parents and students, pretty much standing room only. For some parents this is the first time they will have to deal with a school closure. For others at the school, their children could be going to a 3rd school in about 3 years. As part of the forum, parents signed petitions to keep the school open. They're hoping the support of the community and city lawmakers can keep the school from closing.
"TUSD needs to make a rational decision they're taking a school that has 100% occupancy, it's has 67% minority almost 50% Hispanic, it has the highest performance level that's a model school," said Ward 6 Council Member Steve Kozachik.
Several students from the school spoke to the dozens in the crowd. Including 3rd grader Clayton Vargas. This is the only school he knows and he doesn't want to see it closed. Vargas said, "just the thought of our school closing it's not pleasant."
On December 8 and 10, TUSD will host public hearings on the possible school closures. On December 20, the board is expected to make a final decision on the schools.
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