Electra ISD Students Face Consolidation Changes

Electra ISD Students Face Consolidation Changes

It was the first day of school for students in Electra ISD, but there were no kids in sight at the elementary school many call a landmark.

"I think it was built in 1960 so to have to close down an elementary that was so beloved, it was very hard for the community to make that decision," said Scott Hogue, the superintendent of Electra ISD.

Hogue said, a gradual decline in enrollment over the last 10 years and a decrease in state funds forced the district to shut down Dinsmore Elementary.

"It's been the perfect storm for a lot of cities Electra's size on the finance part of it. I mean, we've lost significant amounts of money from the state and local," said Hogue.

Now the district only has two schools.

The superintendent said, "By consolidating the two campuses, just on utilities alone is going to save us about $250,000 a year and we did not let any staff go"

Kids in Kindergarten through fourth grade are now taking classes at the old junior high, which is now a K through sixth grade elementary. All the elementary teachers now have to get used to working in an entirely different building and some say the change has affected them more than the kids.

"We've come over from an elementary school where we have little children that have to go potty every 30 minutes and just with the bathroom situations in a brand new school it's hard to scope everything out," said Maggie Kieren, a special education elementary teacher.

Seventh and eight grade students are also in a new building. They're now taking classes at the high school. Parents have raised concerns about how older students will treat them but school officials say there's nothing to worry about.

"We're going to have an upper floor dedicated to those grade areas. They'll still use the cafeteria, they'll still use the band hall and things of that nature but we're going to keep them separated as much as possible," said Hogue.

Hogue said Dinsmore Elementary might be turned into a community facility in the future.

Tanya De Jesus, Newschannel 6