The Projo reports that the School Committee approved the plan to move the 6th graders in Cranston back into the elementary schools by a vote of 5 to 2.
While many people are concerned about this, we in Eden Park have particular reason to be concerned, as last night it was also proposed that, to solve the overcrowding problems that the move will cause at Waterman Elementary School, the 6th graders from that school will attend Eden Park Elementary. From the Eden Park PTO listserv:
[...] Waterman Kindergarten and first graders were to originally be redistricted and (bussed) to Garden City School, because of lack of space. After the out cries, and concerns of the Waterman parents, the school committee has put another proposal on the table for Waterman.
Instead of sending their babies to Garden City, they are now proposing to send their 6th graders to Eden Park School. Not only do we now have to find the space for our own two 6th grade classes, we also have to house ALL 6th graders from Waterman School. Either we will have four 6th grade classes or over crowd and stuff them into 2 or 3 classes, but the overcrowding is not our first concern.
At this time our two portables are not in any condition to house 2 classes of children all day long (which we may have to do if Waterman students are redistricted to Eden Park). The air quality is poor, the rugs are disgusting, and the heating system is not working ( as some of you know from December’s Holiday Shop). We wore our coats all day long because they were unable to get the heat to work. When the question of cleaning up the portables was brought up to Deb Greifer and Ken Bowling when they attended our PTO meeting in November, Deb Grieifer said immediately that there was no money in the budget to spend on cleaning existing portables.
However, if we have no choice but to make do with the situation, the Eden Park PTO will hire a company to come into the portables to check for mold, air and heating quality to make sure that both portables pass the inspection and restriction guidelines. With this documentation in hand, we will then be better equipped to fight for the City of Cranston to provide good quality and clean classrooms for our children.
Another issue is where will we put the second kindergarten class in two years when they make ALL DAY KINDERGARTEN? We are already giving up the library and reading room to house the two six grade classes, not four. Where will we put yet another kindergarten class, two more 6th grade classes from Waterman, a library room, reading room and music and art room? Will we get another portable? Is there enough space in the cafeteria for lunch? Will we have to resort to having 3 lunches? These are questions unanswered. We as parents of Eden Park Students have to be the voices for our children. Please call, write or e-mail to not only the school committee, but our Mayor, superintendent, and other city officials.
We will keep you posted as to this current situation.