Melrose parents bring protest to Putnam County School Board meeting

Melrose parents bring protest to Putnam County School Board meeting
Published: Jan. 12, 2021 at 11:18 PM EST
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PALATKA, Fla. (WCJB) - As Putnam County school board members held their meeting inside, people turned their words into actions to advocate for Melrose Elementary.

“Please don’t close our perfect historic elementary school,” said Melrose mom Jessica Hankins. “It’s a staple in our small community town.”

The school is just one of five meant to close at the end of the school year. Hankins first protested Friday against the district’s revitalization plan among parents and the Melrose Patriots. Her plan to send the last of her three children to the school is now put on pause.

“And the parents are really upset because there is no really guarantee of what’s happening,” added Jenkins. “If you’re gonna close the school where are you really putting our children? Is this school really going to happen in a ten-year plan? Where is the funding coming from? They don’t even have the information on how many grants they’re gonna get so we have no idea what’s really going on.”

The revitalization plan is meant to “right-size” their schools by correcting under and over populations while opening the district up to federal grants to build new facilities.

“We’re operating a school that’s not at capacity and it truly costs taxpayers money because that money that we are not using effectively could go into the classroom,” added district four school board member Bud McInnin. “That’s just the nuts and bolts of it that you know, look at the world right now.”

School board members are set to have their final vote on the revitalization plan on February 16.


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