KENOVA, W.Va. — Big changes could be coming for public school students in the northern part of Wayne County starting next school year.

During a press conference Tuesday, it was announced that Kenova Elementary and Ceredo-Kenova Middle School would close at the end of the school year, pending approval from the Board of Education.

“I am absolutely heartbroken,” said parent Alisha Davis during an interview with WSAZ-TV. “I am sick to my stomach.”

Once the schools are closed, students will be dispersed, largely based on grade, to other schools.

As part of the current proposal, Ceredo Elementary will hold Pre-K, Kindergarten and first graders from both Ceredo and Kenova.

Ceredo-Kenova Middle students will be split up and sent to either Buffalo or Vinson Middle Schools. Then Ceredo-Kenova Middle will become the new home for Ceredo and Kenova Elementary students in second, third, fourth and fifth grades.

Exact dates for the closures and changes have not been announced.

This latest reconfiguration plan is the most recent attempt to address the controversy in Kenova that began after sink holes found on the property of Kenova Elementary School caused the school to be closed in May 2011. Students since then have been put in modular classrooms.

“We’ve been lied to. We’ve been promised a new school to go directly into so I’m just sick and I’m heartbroken,” said Davis.

Last December, school officials attempted to pass a $30 million school bond levy that would pay for improvements to the existing schools and help build two new schools. That levy was voted down by residents.

According to a press release, another bond election is being proposed for the May Primary. This one would have voters contributing $16.2 million to match $6 million from the general fund and $16.2 million from the West Virginia School Building Authority.

School officials said this one would only address the most immediate needs of the school systems, but still be enough to build a new Ceredo-Kenova Elementary School and a PreK-8 in Crum. It would also allow for classrooms to be added at Wayne High School to get rid of the modular classes.

Before any decisions are made however, community meetings will be scheduled with each school impacted by the proposed plan.

The first one will be held at 6 p.m. on Monday, October 28 at the Ceredo-Kenova High School gymnasium.

No date has been set on when the school board will vote on the plan.

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  • SBAdoesn't care.

    SBA doesn't care about kids. The formula needs changed or the SBA done away with entirely.

  • Gunga Din

    In the immortal words of Emil Faber, "Knowledge is Good."

  • Herb

    If you want to build new schools or renovate the ones you have, you have to pass your bond. There is no way around it. The county doesn't have enough in the bank to do it alone (no matter what the conspiracy theorists say), and the state WILL NOT fund projects without matching funds from the county.

    Look at what is going on in Morgan County right now to see what could happen all across the state - people are so disgusted with what's happening in Washington they vote no on anything they can. The irony is that they wind up cutting the legs out from under their own local school systems and first responder services, when county level votes are our best leverage to keep our money local.

  • wvman75

    I'm still trying to figure out what's wrong with a modular classroom. It's still a functional classroom. I had some classes in modular classrooms. If you pay attention, you learn just as much.

    • wvman75

      I may not be hip. Is there some negative social inference that applies to anyone schooled in a modular classroom at one time or another? That would seem an unhealthy superiority complex.

      • Herb

        I have not taught in a modular, but my friends who do complain about heating and cooling problems because of cheap construction, constant disruptions because of playground and parking lot noise, more disruptions because of chatter on the radio that they have to use because the intercom doesn't work, and security issues (students moving across open areas to get to the portable and vandalism or thefts on the trailer itself). I agree with wvman, no knock against the teachers or students who use them.

  • wvu4life

    Fayette county is (TRYING) to put 3 high schools into one.

    • Harpers Ferry

      I suggest they don't, it loses an element of community pride when they do that. Jefferson County combined Harpers Ferry, Shepherdstown, and Charles Town High Schools in the early 70's and it really hurt that sense of community. Ironically, with the rise in population, Jefferson County will end up going back to 3 high schools along the lines of Harpers Ferry, Shepherdstown, and Charles Town very soon.