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Waldrop recommending limited realignments

BY KATHLEEN FOX kfox@paducahsun.com

The McCracken County Board of Education will hold a specially called meeting Thursday to consider proposed amendments to the district's facility plan.

The meeting, set for 5:30 p.m. at the central office on Berger Road, will include discussions about potential changes to Reidland, Farley and Heath schools. Superintendent Nancy Waldrop plans to recommend the following: maintaining the current structure, grade configuration and locations for Reidland and Farley elementary schools for the 2014-2015 school year, according to director of public relations Jayme Jones.

She said the only change added for next school year will be to move sixth, seventh and eighth grade currently in the Reidland Middle School building to the newer half of the currently empty Reidland High School facility. The renovation of the older half of the previous high school building - planned by Paducah architectural firm Peck Flannery Gream Warren Inc. - has begun and the first draft of the construction schematics were approved last month.

The delay will allow middle school students access to a newer facility and give the district additional time to prepare for the future opening of Reidland Intermediate School and movement of students in the 2015-2016 school year, Jones said.

The district's planning committee recommended by a 15-2 vote to close Farley Elementary School and realign students in the Reidland area after two public forums in January. The group also discussed a no-action measure that would delay the decision for one year, similar to the recommendation, until a new committee is elected.

Discussions on Thursday are set to include the review and approval of the amended facilities plan, setting up a timeline for the chosen plan, selecting an officer to lead the Kentucky Department of Education public hearing, and approving the revised Reidland High School BG-1 renovation documents as well as a district calendar update, according to the meeting agenda. If the board approves the facilities plan, it will be sent to the Kentucky Department of Education for approval, then sent back to the board to conduct a final public hearing.

Contact Kathleen Fox, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8651 or follow @kathleendfox on Twitter.

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