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Salem-Keizer Plans To Close Five Elementary Schools

Officials at Oregon’s second-largest school district have a plan to close five school buildings over the next two years. But it’s not final yet.  

Salem-Keizer would shutter Lake Labish, Fruitland and Bethel Elementary schools this summer. Rosedale and Hazel Green would close next summer.

District chief of staff Mary Paulson says budget cuts are forcing the moves.

Mary Paulson: “Our school district is looking at anywhere up to $55 million worth of cuts, just for next year, so it’s one of many proposals that we will be putting in front of the board and the budget committee to close that gap.”

Only about 220 students are spread across the three small elementaries slated to close this year, according to Salem-Keizer enrollment reports.

School board members will first discuss closing schools next Tuesday. A board vote on the first round of closings – for this fall – is scheduled for June. The fate of the two schools slated to close in 2012 wouldn’t be decided until next school year.

School boards in North Clackamas, Eugene, and Springfield have already voted to close schools, during the current budget cycle.

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