Polk Elementary School closing raises tension among parents - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Polk Elementary School closing raises tension among parents

Posted: Updated: March 13, 2012 08:00 AM

The Cedar Rapids School Board voted Monday to close Polk Elementary School and Monroe Early Childhood Center.  

Tensions were high as each member of the Cedar Rapids Community School Board announced what schools would be closing.


Polk and Monroe supporters felt like they had presented solid evidence as to why the schools should stay open, but in the end all but one council member were in favor of the closure.

Board member Gary Anhalt was the only person to vote against closing the school.

The meeting was filled to capacity.

Polk and monroe supporters left the school board meeting just seconds after they learned the fate of the school.

The vote was based on recommendations made in February by Superintendent Dr. Dave Benson.  

Dr. Benson believes his plan will save the district $1 million. 

Prior to the vote parents and students had circulated a petition with more than 1,900 signatures in an attempt to prevent Polk Elementary School from closing.


Members of the school board said they are considering evaluating school boundaries and properties on a more regular basis.


Two other schools being considered for closure were Harrison and Madison.  Benson said keeping Harrison open is an effort to support the city's flood recovery. The school board decided to wait and discuss those two schools at a later date.



Families of students affected by a boundary change or school closure will receive detailed information by mail Tuesday.

The closing of the Monroe Early Childhood Center means those students will be assigned to their resident elementary schools: Grant Wood and Johnson among others. 

Polk's boundary will be divided into three attendance areas:  Arthur, Garfield, and Johnson

Students are permitted to go to any elementary schools east of both Interstate 380 and the Cedar River.
Polk students can also go to Taylor Elementary School.
Transportation from Polk to Taylor will be provided.


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