Saavedra: Keep Key Open

"Under the bond program approved by our voters lastNovember, Key Middle School is scheduled to receiveamong other improvements, new windows throughoutthe school, a new chiller system for the air-conditioningsystem. If the school board approves this proposal we'llget started with the work as soon as possible so that everything will be ready when school resumes in August."

Key Middle was closed for a few months this school year. Students were sent to Fleming Middle School while thedistrict dealt with a mold issue. The campus was re-openedearlier in March, but officials say the school still suffers fromwhat they call "damp building syndrome". School boardtrustee Carol Mims Galloway has led the fight to keep KeyMiddle School open.

"Closing Key Middle School is not the right thing for ourcommunity. Making the school the best it can be for ourkids and keeping Key in the center of our communityis the right thing to do."

Saavedra had considered sending students from Key to nearby Kashmere High School and shutting down the middleschool permanently. Houston Federation of TeachersPresident Gayle Fallon says that would have been a badchoice.

"I think what he avoided by doing this was a major community uprising because that community has been loud and clear that they don't want their junior high kidson a senior high campus. Having taught in a junior-seniorhigh, I don't blame them. It's a bad situation most of the time."

The school board will consider the proposal to keep the schoolopen at a special meeting at 3 pm tomorrow.
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