Rome teachers rally against school renovation plan
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ROME, N.Y. -- After class was dismissed, some Rome teachers held a rally. The teachers and other community members are concerned about the plan for students during the renovation of Strough Middle School.
Strough will have modernized classrooms and increased handicapped accessibility, among other improvements. But, the school board had to decide what to do with students while the changes take place. The options included having the school partially occupied, or vacating the property completely.
Earlier in the month, the school board voted to relocate Strough seventh and eighth grade students to Staley Upper Elementary. Sixth grade students would be sent to Fort Stanwix, and all fifth grade students will remain in the schools that they currently attend. However, teachers are concerned that the plan would be too disruptive.
"They're disrupting 70 percent of our students to renovate one building. And so our students will have to move, make many transitions, which research said is bad for achievement," said Trisha Romano, a teacher.
Mary Davis, a school board member, added, "I am not going to jeopardize the health of any of our students by having major construction work done that could be detrimental to them in terms of their health."
The renovations will take place during the 2013-2014 school year. The total cost is $25.4 million.