Some teachers in the Rome School District are hoping to teach a lesson outside of the classroom. They're voicing their concerns about re-location plan for students during future renovations at one middle school. The plan has already been approved by the school board, but as our Iris St. Meran reports, that didn't stop teachers from holding a rally Wednesday.
ROME, N.Y. -- Strough Middle School hasn't had much work done to classrooms or other areas since 1957. Next school year, it will undergo upgrades to remove asbestos, modernized classrooms, increase handicapped accessibility among other changes. It's what will happen to students while this is taking place that has teachers fired up and rallying to express concerns.
The school board considered a few options, but voted earlier this month to vacate the property. Strough 7th and 8th graders will go to Staley Upper Elementary. 6th graders will go to Fort Stanwix School and all 5th graders will remain in schools they currently attend.
Rome Teachers Association President Rob Wood said, "The main concern is that there is discontinuity. That we are now upsetting numerous grade levels of children."
But it's the children who were on the minds of one board member who voted for this temporary change. Other options included moves to other schools as well as to partially occupy the building during construction.
"I think that it's the best decision because you already have students with pulmonary issues, who have serious respiratory issues," said school board member Mary Davis.
One student has gone through a similar move in the past and says it's hard to adjust.
"It's different than what your school was doing before and it's kind of different," said fourth grader Arianna Traviglia.
Although both sides have different opinions about how to proceed, one thing they share in common is care and concern for students.
The renovations will take place during the 2013-2014 school year. The total cost is $25.4 million.