Parents from A-rated Lakeview Fundamental Elementary School are stepping up their efforts to oppose a proposed move to D-rated Gulfport Elementary.
The group has created a website to generate information about Pinellas County superintendent Julie Janssen's plan to relocate the school and open up 300 more fundamental seats. Her plan also calls for Gulfport's Montessori, which is now a school-within-a-school, to move into the smaller Lakeview building.
Steven Verano, father of a first-grader at the school, said parents are circulating a petition, writing School Board members, chatting on Facebook and gearing up to speak in protest during Tuesday's School Board meeting.
School leaders are always saying they want more parental involvement, Verano said: Lakeview has it. "We do all those things, and it seems like something the school district should be trying to copy and not trying to break up," said Verano, who was attracted to the school in part due to its small size.
Parents worry that by allowing current Gulfport students to be grandfathered in, the school's commitment to parental involvement could be compromised. They also don't like that Gulfport students whose parents haven't gone through the lottery system as other fundamental parents are required to do could be given preference under the current proposal.
District leaders met last week with teachers and staff at both schools to discuss the proposal. And on Thursday staff members from both schools are expected to talk about the proposal at Gulfport at 3:30 p.m.