Friday, February 13, 2015

TOP STORY >> District to shut middle school

Leader senior staff writer

Jacksonville-North Pulaski officials will discuss moving middle school students from Jacksonville to Northwood beginning the next school year, the transition to one high school in 2016-17 and future facilities planning at a pair of “community conversations” next week, according to chief of staff Phyllis Stewart.

The first will be at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Jacksonville Community Center, according to Stewart, and the second is set for 6 p.m. Thursday at Bayou Meto Elementary School.

The Pulaski County Special School District has said Northwood would close at the end of the 2014-15 school year because of declining enrollment, Stewart said. Jacksonville-North Pulaski Superintendent Bobby Lester proposed the move to provide Jacksonville Middle School students and staff a better, safer facility for teaching and learning.

“Education today is delivered in an entirely different manner, with new tools, techniques and teaching methods that don’t fit the simplistic conventions of 60-year-old school designs,” Lester said. “Moving our Jacksonville Middle School students and staff to the Northwood facility for one year is not ideal, but it is a step in the right direction.”

North Pulaski High School is tentatively slated to be remodeled into the district’s middle school once all of its students go to a single high school.

Northwood, off Jackson-ville-Cato Road, is 6.8 miles from Jacksonville Middle School. Students will be provided transportation.

For more information, contact Stewart at 501-519-4768.