Southeastern PA

Quakertown parents voice concerns over plan to close middle school

Quakertown parents voice concerns...

QUAKERTOWN, Pa. - Concerned parents in the Quakertown Community School District will get their chance to be heard Tuesday night. They're worried about a proposal to close a middle school as a way to deal with funding problems.

District officials say money is tight and they need a plan to help close their $4.7 million budget deficit.

But, the superintendent's plan to solve financial woes includes closing Milford Middle School, maybe by the end of summer, and worried parents say they want the district to wait and not make any hasty decisions.

"They've given us several options but we won't find out which one they are going to use until July, that's a month before school starts, we won't even know which building our children will be attending," said Melanie Brown, a parent in the district.

Closing Milford is just one part of Superintendent William Harner's plan to deal with the district's growing deficit. Others include consolidating elementary schools, eliminating teacher positions, and using modular classrooms.

"The parents are asking for Dr. Harner to give us about a year of time, where we can form committees, see if there are alternative ways to handle the budget at this point," said parent Eileen Tait-Acker.

During previous meetings, the superintendent has said Quakertown needs to deal with a serious facilities problem and many of the school  buildings, including Milford, are in bad shape.

Parents say they understand the financial concerns but hope the district can consider additional options.

"We are certainly aware of the financial aspects, we do understand financial responsibility comes with the best interests of our children," Brown said.

The meeting began at 6:30 p.m.

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