Rochester school district reorganization goes to vote Thursday

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Rochester City School District Board of Education members will vote on the district’s reorganization plan at a meeting on Thursday.

The vote comes after several community meetings with parents, students and teachers over the past several weeks regarding the plan, which will close 11 schools along with five buildings at the end of the school year.

“We wanted to make sure we got the input of the community and other stakeholders,” Board of Education president Cynthia Elliot said at a previous community forum.

If approved, the district’s plan will align with a new grade structure approved by the board last year, with all schools organized as pre-K to 6th, 7-8th and 9-12th.

According to the plan, students in closing schools will participate in a special lottery that will determine which school they will attend next year. Affected 7th graders will go to a 7-8th grade school in their zone.

As far as how the plan could affect faculty members, Board of Education President Cynthia Elliot has said the hope is to keep as many teachers from losing their jobs as possible, but she didn’t rule it out.

“We don’t think that we are going to have that much of a displacement, meaning that they will lose their jobs. We are looking at, there may be, minimal. But it’s not going to have that kind of an impact,” Elliot said at a previous forum.

After a closed-door meeting with parents and faculty at School 10 last month, parents and teachers expressed concerns over how closing the school could impact their students and the community.

District officials have cited declining enrollment numbers as one of the primary reasons the reorganization plan is necessary.

The board will vote on the plan during its meeting Thursday, Oct. 19, which starts at 6:30 p.m.