New Group Forms To Fight Chauncey Elementary Closing

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A new group has been formed in a response to a proposal to close Chauncey Elementary School in Athens County.

It is called the Save Our Schools campaign and the group is committed to keeping all of the school buildings in the Athens City School District even though there's an estimated $12 million shortfall expected for the district by 2016.

Superintendent Carl Martin has suggested that one way to make up some of the money is to close Chauncey Elementary.

Local parent and co-chair to the Save Out Schools campaign Mark McCutchan says that speaking up at the polls could help keep the all the buildings open.

"We really have two goals from the Save Our Schools campaign. It is to initiate a school levy, and put that on the November ballot so that people have the choice whether to keep the good schools they have or to have them start declining. That's up to them. We're just trying to raise the issues and start a debate in the community because it seems like it was just getting rubber stamped that there are definitely going to be cuts and there is nothing that we can do about it. So we wanted to raise that issue. And the second goal is parent involvement," says McCutchan.

Closing Chauncey Elementary School and shifting students to The Plains Elementary School is estimated to save the district $1 million annually, leaving the district with an $8 million shortfall by 2016.

The Save Our Schools campaign will have a public meeting on Monday at 6 p.m. at The Plains Public Library to discuss the issue.