Tulsa Superintendent Gives Sneak Peek Of Final Consolidation Proposal

Thursday, April 21st 2011, 5:01 pm
By: News On 6

NewsOn6.com & Ashli Sims, News ON 6

TULSA, Oklahoma – The Superintendent of Tulsa Public Schools gave the community a sneak peek of his final consolidation proposal at a forum at Clinton Middle School Thursday evening.

Parents, students, and teachers are all anxious to find out what will be included in the final plan.

Read all three Project Schoolhouse Proposals

Dr. Keith Ballard didn't give any specifics at Thursday night's forum, but did highlight three areas:

"The sixth,seventh, and eighth concept is absolutely phasing out in America, because of what effect its having on sixth graders. That's going to be reflected in my final recommendation," he said.

Among Dr. Ballard's highlights Thursday night were:

  1. Bringing 6th grade back down to elementary schools, grouping pre-k through 6th grade together.
  2. Looking into a 7th through 12th grade configuration.
  3. Expanding language immersion programs

Ballard said he expected about a dozen schools to close. That's a sharp contrast to the 23 that were listed under one consolidation proposal.

He said the district would save about $5 million under the final proposal.

"The proposal we have come up with is a blend of financial efficiency because we need to do that but its also a blend of instructional efficiency," he said.

Ballard will announce his final recommendation Friday morning.

Many elements found in the original three plans have now been ruled out.

  • Ballard has promised to keep Central High School and Peary Elementary school open.
  • He's also tossed out plans to relocate Thoreau Demonstration Academy at Nimitz Middle School.

The new Rogers High School featuring an early college program seems to have gained traction with administrators and parents.

Ballard says he's taking all of the factors and the feedback into account.

"No one particular piece of information is going to make the decision," he said.  "You have to look at everything in its entirety. And certainly whatever you do at the end you need to justify why you're doing it."

Related Stories:

4/20/2011 Tulsa Parents, Students Make Final Plea To Save Schools
4/20/2011 Tulsa Public Schools To Present Final Project Schoolhouse Proposal Friday

4/19/2011 Tulsa Superintendent Met With Cheers, Jeers At Consolidation Forum

4/18/2011 Tulsa Superintendent Says He Misspoke About Nixing Consolidation Proposal

4/18/2011 Tulsa Public Schools Survey: Parents Support Consolidation, If...

4/16/2011 TPS: Every Student May Be Affected By Shuttered Tulsa Schools

4/14/2011 Tulsa Superintendent Axes One Of Three Consolidation Proposals

4/13/2011 Tulsa Public Schools Superintendent Says Consolidation Long Overdue

4/12/2011 Tulsa Public School Superintendent: Part Of Consolidation Proposals Off The Table

4/12/2011 Survey Finds Tulsa Teachers Willing To Change For 'Trade Ups'

4/8/2011 District Consolidation Spurs Third Survey From Tulsa Public Schools

4/6/2011 Tulsa Elementary Parents Unite Against Possible School Closing

4/5/2011 Tulsa Neighborhood Rallies To Save Elementary School

4/5/2011 How Will District Consolidation Affect Transfer Trend At Tulsa Public Schools?

4/5/2011 Tulsa Public Schools Urging Parents To Pre-Enroll Pre-K, Kindergarten Students

4/4/2011 Tulsa Parents Fight To Keep Elementary School Open

4/4/2011 Consolidation Proposal Would Make Tulsa School Grades 1-12

4/1/2011 Parents, Kids Protest District's Proposal To Close Tulsa Elementary School

3/31/2011 Consolidation Means Possible Expansion For Some TPS Programs

3/31/2011 Tulsa Public Schools: $1.1 Million In Bonds Committed To Sites That Could Close

3/31/2011 Tulsa Public Schools Revises Dates For Forums On School Consolidation

3/30/2011 TPS Proposal Would Make Rogers High School A College Magnet Program

3/30/2011 Tulsa Elementary Teachers Hope To Keep School Open

3/29/2011 TPS Parent: Community Will Fail If School Closes

3/29/2011 Some Say Eliminating Tulsa Middle Schools Would Benefit Students

3/29/2011 Neighbors Raise Concerns Over Possible Tulsa Elementary School Closures

3/29/2011 TPS Superintendent: District Spread Too Thin To Be Effective

3/29/2011 Tulsa Public Schools Could Close Up To 17 Schools