Special Commission on Schools and Neighborhoods

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The announcement from Lansing came as a shock to parents in December--5 schools on the chopping block to fill a $10 million dollar budget gap. Now that shell shock is over, the mayor's new commission is ready to move forward, operating on the assumption that these schools will close.

"One of the concerns," co-chair MSU president Lou Anna Simon explains, "is that the commission not become embroiled in reopening the wounds about school closings."

Dr. Simon has been tapped to head the committee along with LCC President Paula Cunningham.

"We need neighborhoods that are full vitality and life, but we've got to find a way to do it that's not solely, solely based on schools to provide that," Simon says.

With school cuts looming, Simon says her commission will get right to work. They hope to have findings to present to Lansing for building a new kind of neighborhood by June.