OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) — The Oakland Unified School District sent a letter to parents Thursday to give reasons for why they are considering closing some schools.
Students and staff at the schools that are among the recommended closures were supposed to find out on Friday, but a school official posted the draft of recommended schools on Facebook early.
Mike Hutchinson, the director for district 5, says the district is not in a financial crisis.
According to him, the school district is considering closing more than 10 schools. That includes a few elementary schools like Prescott and Brookfield. Plus, Westlake Middle School and high schools like Rudsdale.
Hutchinson says there’s also the possibility to merge schools like Highland and Rise.
The reason for the school consolidation is due to under-enrolled schools that are costing the district a lot of money, according to OUSD.
“Right now, we are projecting that next year we will have 19 elementary schools that have fewer than 304 students, which is the population needed to make elementary schools financially sustainable,” the letter said.
The district is also arguing that they’re investing more in smaller schools than larger schools and it’s preventing them from serving students and paying their teachers and staff a better salary.
The Board of Education is set to hold a special meeting on Jan. 31 at 6 p.m. to hear and discuss the final recommendations for consolidation from OUSD staff. Then, voting on the proposed school consolidations will happen during a second special meeting on Feb. 8 at 6 p.m, the district said.