The Newtown Board of Education has taken up the matter of closing an elementary school due to declining enrollment. After an outcry from parents, the Board decided unanimously last night that Hawley School will remain open for the 2016-2017 school year.
A closure would have saved millions of dollars for the district. Enrollment projections from a private consultant last fall projected the town will lose about 200 students per year for the next several years.
Most of the students would have been transferred to Sandy Hook School. Some parents argued that their children weren't emotionally ready for that.
A $50 million state grant was accepted by Newtown for the new school is replacing the one demolished in the wake of December 2012 shootings. Some residents speaking out against the closing of Hawley School said it was an odd decision given the ongoing construction of a replacement for Sandy Hook Elementary School.
No decision was made about Hawley School's future after 2017.