When it comes to a long-term plan to rightsize the school district, the Erie School Board has narrowed it down to three options.
"The big thing is, we're talking about bringing equity to our schools," said Erie School District Superintendent Jay Badams. "Every child, if this plan were to see fruition, would be in a newly renovated school."
Under "Option A," the district would eliminate three schools including Emerson Gridley, Wayne and Wilson. The plan keeps each high school open. But it closes a portion of Central Tech which will become a half-day program. Central students will receive their basic instruction education at either Strong Vincent or East High School.
"Currently, they (Central Tech) offer a four year program in career and technology education," said educational planner Vern McKissick. "That's going to be changed to more full-time, more intensive two year programs."
"Option B" calls for the closure of Perry, Irving, Edison, Emerson Gridley, Wayne and Wilson. The plan aims at restructuring how the high schools are used. According to McKissick, students at East High School would move into Collegiate Academy's facility and East would be turned into an elementary center. Meanwhile, students from Collegiate Academy would move into Central Tech.
"Academy remains the same program, but would move to Central Tech," said McKissick.
Considered the most aggressive plan, "Option C" would reduce the amount of buildings in the district from 17 to 11. Collegiate Academy Students would still move to Central Tech, but the former Academy building would turn into a K-8 facility.
"By doing that, we'll be able to close several other buildings and actually look at a savings of about $30 million." said McKissick.
The three options range in price from $270 to $300 million.