KENOVA, W.Va. — A proposed school reconfiguration plan in Wayne County to some heat during its first community meeting Monday night in Kenova.
Hundreds of parents, teachers and community members packed the Ceredo-Kenova Wonderdome for the meeting as over 25 speakers voiced their concerns on the plan.
The questions and comments varied from person to person, but the overwhelming message by those in attendance was that the plan proposed by the Wayne County Board of Education did not sit well with them.
The plan would close Kenova Elementary and Ceredo-Kenova Middle School at the end of the school year.
Then students from Ceredo and Kenova elementary schools and Ceredo-Kenova Middle School would be dispersed to other facilities based upon their grade levels.
Parents were concerned about having their kids dispersed to other schools that they were not familiar with and also simply with the idea of having to shutdown two schools. There was also some concerns about how the plan came to light last week.
The majority of the comments were, however, in favor of a proposed bond election in May that would have taxpayers contributing $16.2 million. As part of the bond, the West Virginia School Building Authority would match that $16.2 million contribution.
The funding would be enough to build a new Ceredo-Kenova Elementary School and a PreK-8 in Crum as well as add classrooms at Wayne High School to get rid of the modular classes.
At the close of the meeting, Wayne County Superintendent Lynn Hurt established a committee that will meet at 11 a.m. Saturday at Kenova Elementary. The committee will be made up of residents of Ceredo and Kenova, and the members will be selected by the principals at the Ceredo and Kenova elementary schools and Ceredo-Kenova Middle.
The plan is for each school to have a committee of five people, a principal, a teacher, a service employee, a parent and a member of the community.
Those committees will take a closer look at the proposed plan and then be able to come up with their own suggestions to modify the current plan and make it better.
Whatever plan the committee agrees upon will go before the Wayne County School Board for consideration and a vote. If approved, the plan will be submitted by school officials to the SBA before December 2.
A second community meeting is scheduled for Tuesday night at 6 p.m. for Ceredo-Kenova Middle School in the school’s gymnasium.