Decision final: HISD to close Dodson Elementary

Despite last-ditch efforts by parents and students, HISD has decided that Dodson Elementary will close at the school year's end
April 10, 2014 8:27:56 PM PDT
After much controversy, it's official: HISD says they will be consolidating Dodson Elementary and Blackshear.

This was basically over before it started. Nineteen people signed up to speak at Thursday night's meeting about Dodson Elementary, but they didn't get that chance.

"We want the qualified instructors, we want the programs," parent Travis McGee said.

McGee came here with a sliver of hope that he could save Dodson Elementary from closing.

"I picked a better school for my kids, a better chance for my kids, and here we're starting all over again," he said.

"Dodson was ranked in the top 20 percent of most improved schools in the state," concerned resident Ruth Kravetz said.

Houston ISD trustees were due to discuss the possibility of keeping Dodson open, after they voted last month to close it.

"I wanted to bring it up because I was provided additional info that made me say this should be reconsidered," HISD trustee Juliet Stipeche said.

But that discussion didn't happen. Instead it was tabled indefinitely.

"Tabling it, that's just an administrative way to bypass the community and it's really not acceptable," concerned citizen Errol Jones said.

And all 19 people who came here to save Dodson turned around and went home without being heard.

"It was as if our input and what we had to say didn't even matter -- bottom line," concerned citizen Tahir Charles said.

For now it appears Dodson will close, and McGee will have to break the bad news to his children, all over again.

"Their job is to improve our schools, not close or move our schools," he said.

Superintendent Terry Grier says school consolidations represent an opportunity to strengthen schools. Dodson and its Montessori program will move to Blackshear Elementary.

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