Parents Fight Closing Plan

By: Chris Sutter Email
By: Chris Sutter Email

Student made signs saying "save our school" are plastered on both the outside and inside of Grand River Elementary to express the message that nearly every parent, teacher, and student from the school desperately want the Lansing School District to hear.

"Closing the school-- it's not going to be the problem solver," Grand River Elementary parent, Alicia Flores says.

Rather a problem starter-- these parents say. They tell us the teachers and education are second to none at this school.

"Is my child going to get that same education somewhere else that she got here? I want to know that," parent Veronica Cannons says.

She has several kids who go to grade school at Grand River and says sending her kids elsewhere could really stunt the progress her children have made.

"They're taking away the kid's education," Cannons says.

She adds that Grand River is the school that should be saved from the chopping block. After all, LSD will close two of three schools in the area.

And while parents are mad-- it's safe to say teachers like Shane Johnson are steamed too.

"Being a staff member-- I think it's even a little bit more sad because you've seen kids coming through over the years and families," Johnson says.

He says the hardest part of the process is trying to explain to his 5th grade students why this may be the last year they'll see each other-- understandably difficult says Superintendent T.C. Wallace.

"Anytime you close a school it's one of the more difficult decisions that a superintendent has to make," Wallace says.

But he says he's between a rock and hard place-- and he has to do what's right.

"We can hope that they (the parents) realize that such a closing is larger-- it's for the greater good of the school district and the greater good of all of the youngsters," Wallace says.

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  • by SJ Location: Lansing on Mar 31, 2009 at 11:00 AM
    Where were all these concerned parents at the PTA meetings? Grand River school is the only school in the district that doesn't give out RIF books for lack of volunteers. It's the only school without a true principal. Dr. Cloman is only the interim principal. Not one parent showed up with their children at the magnet school fair,but that's ok because the school lost its magnet accreditdation two years ago. Why is the lunch cashier who threw food at the children still working? There is so much wrong at the school, but no parent champions showed up until the tv cameras did. If these strongly opinionated parents had been working all along to make Grand River a better school it wouldn't be on the chopping block. To answer Ms. Cannon's question, her children would be better educated at any other Lansing school.
  • by Mark Location: Lansing on Mar 30, 2009 at 09:14 PM
    That's too bad that TC Wallace thinks that he's helping people. Because in reality, he doesn't give a d@mn about this district or our teachers, students, or parents. Otherwise he wouldn't have tried to weasel out of his contract and move to Pontiac (too bad they didn't want him). Wallace and his self-deemed Messiah Hugh Clarke (what a racist pig) don't give a rip about the district. They just want to inflate their own egos and spend money the district doesn't have.
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