Broward County Public Schools considers closing some campuses

Broward County Public Schools is preparing to close some schools. Their data shows that about 28% of public schools in the district have an enrollment that is under 70%.

Superintendent Peter Licata said the trend is statewide. He attributed it to a combination of factors including the growing number of charter schools and parents’ use of vouchers.

Nearly four dozen schools are within the scope of the decision pending, which could include grade level reconfigurations, school boundary changes, repurposing, or selling.

“We do have too many elementary schools,” Licata said. “We have a few too many middle schools maybe.”

Lori Alhadeff, the chair of Broward County School Board, said on Wednesday that she wants to see “a long-term facilities assessment plan.”

Beverly Perkins, a Pompano Beach commissioner, fears the most vulnerable will suffer if schools are closed. She asked education officials to avoid closures.

“We are on top of things. Now the community is on board and ready to help these schools in any way that we can,” Perkins said.

Licata said also at hand is the development of a strategy to persuade parents to choose public schools.

“A lot of them have moved away, birth rates changed,” Licata said. “We’re not just looking to close schools. We’re looking to make sure we can get some kids back.”

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