Beatrice Elementary Schools Going to Grade-Level System

BEATRICE – Beatrice Public Schools will go to a grade-level arrangement in elementary buildings, beginning with the 2018-2019 school year.

The board voted 5-0, with one member absent Thursday night, to accept the recommendation by Superintendent Pat Nauroth.  It’s aimed at preventing the moving of children between buildings every year to solve differences in class size.

:25                  “comes to light”

Nauroth says moving children has been an annual occurrence.

:15                  “we’re full”

A small group of parents has been attending school board sessions, urging the board to delay the decision for a year. They say that might produce a better plan for using buildings, and help to settle issues such as busing, parking, interior remodeling and the costs.  Parent Neal Trantham has two children at Lincoln Elementary and one other who will be affected by the change.  He feels there are more options than the four final choices considered by the district.   He favors the approaching the issue in the same way parents have been included in the master facilities planning process.

:14                  “options are”

Trantham said the district’s purchase of land north of the high school prior to the failed elementary bond issues, may have been a case of “putting the cart before the horse”.

Two school board candidates, Eugene Fiester and Andrew Pinney spoke against the grade-level option, before the board Thursday night.  Pinney favored waiting for a better plan.  Fiester supported one of the other four options.  Pinney said there hasn’t been enough public involvement.

:12                  “parents”

School Board member Steve Winter says it’s difficult to force the public to be involved.

:19                  “to this”

Board member Doris Martin says waiting a year to move forward with an option would likely turn into several years.

:32                  “what happens”

Under the grade level plan chosen by the board, Lincoln Elementary will be a kindergarten through second grade building.  Stoddard Elementary will be grades three through five.  Paddock Lane will be K-to-five and house the district’s special education programs for elementary students.   This past year, the district converted Cedar Elementary into the Beatrice Community Preschool.

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