Central Elementary could close in Waynesville

Central Elementary School, in Waynesville, NC, may close at the end of the school year, according to Haywood County Schools.

If the school closes, 230 students will have to be relocated.

There are two neighboring schools, Hazelwood Elementary and Junaluska Elementary, that would have enough room for the students.

A decrease in funding, a reduction in enrollment, and the opening of a charter school in the district are just a few reasons why closing the school is an option, according to the district.

The school has lost 396 students in the last two years.

The district says they have to have a “sound operating budget,” and need to cut about $2.4 million.

They say closing the school would save the district about $500,000 a year.

Cutting 22 teachers, 2 assistant principals, and 4 teachers from their learning facility will contribute to the budget reduction.

They say the rest of the reduction will come from cutting the following:
– supplies by 71%
– non-revenue sports by 50%
– band supplies by 52%
– band travel by 50%
– choral supplies by 50%
– remediation for middle and high school students by 40%
– vocational programs by 50%
– local materials by 20%
– coaches’ pay by 42%

The district plans to adjust administrator’s pay, and cut media clerks and custodian overtime.

They also plan to eliminate door-to-door sales by students, and are considering asking for participation fees for competitive extracurricular activities.

The study of whether or not to close the school will be completed on Jan. 21.

There will be a meeting for public input on Jan. 26, and a decision will be made on Jan. 28.

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