Does John Pedicone want to close your neighborhood school?

OCCUPIED TUCSON CITIZEN

Parents and teachers worried about possible TUSD school closures would be wise to keep a close eye on what Superintendent John Pedicone‘s staff is calling the School Facilities Master Plan.

Picture of projected screen reads, "TUSD Criteria Optimally Sized Schools: Elementary 400 - 650, Capacity >450; K-8 650 - 950, Capacity >650; Middle 750 - 1000, Capacity >750; High 1400 - 3000, Capacity > 1400. Lower enrollments may be appropriate for specialized academic programs and/or schools with additional funding sources. Facility utilization should be 90% overall, by school level and at each school. Transportation times should be

At their July 10 regular meeting, TUSD board members approved what their agenda described as “guidelines and criteria for school consolidation process for the purpose of obtaining public input.” Basically, this authorizes the next phase in Pedicone’s plan: holding town hall meetings and community forums premised on the idea that TUSD, due to a budgetary emergency, must close a substantial number of its schools. The issue is politically complicated, many of the district’s assumptions are matters of debate, and one big question seems to loom over all others: which schools, specifically, might be closed?

Unsurprisingly, they’re not providing specifics. For now, we have the “guidelines and criteria” approved by the board on July 10. Elementary schools should have enrollments of 400 or more, etc. Click on the image above, and you’ll see a summary of these.

Board members were provided with October 2011 enrollment statistics for all TUSD schools. Based on that information, and the guidelines and criteria they reviewed and approved, I’ve created a chart in which schools that don’t meed the minimum “optimal” enrollment appear in red. This doesn’t necessarily mean they’re candidates for closure; the guidelines acknowledge that lower enrollments “may be appropriate” in certain situations.

I take no responsibility for the data contained in this chart; the figures are simply what TUSD provided to its board members. Some of the “middle schools” listed here, such as Safford and Roskruge, are in fact K-8 schools. Certain special-purpose schools, such as Meredith K-12 (an exclusively special education facility) aren’t relevant to what’s being considered here. But I hope this list gives concerned folks a place to start.

Elementary Schools

Minimum “optimal” enrollment: 400

School Name Year built Oct 2011 enrollment Capacity (building) Capacity (portables) Avail seats (building) Avail seats (portables)
Banks 2002 363 570 0 207 207
Blenman 1968 504 650 2 146 186
Bloom 1972 340 370 3 30 90
Bonillas 1959 445 550 3 105 165
Borman 1976 499 650 0 151 151
Borton 1957 366 210 6 -156 -36
Brichta 1973 400 300 5 -100 0
Carrillo 1950 321 390 0 69 69
Cavett 1966 313 520 6 207 327
Collier 1973 281 410 3 129 189
Corbett 1958 450 720 0 270 270
Cragin 1961 389 510 6 121 241
Davidson 2006 373 450 0 77 77
Davis 1961 318 350 2 32 72
Dietz 1965 348 490 2 142 182
Drachman 1996 338 350 6 12 132
Dunham 1974 208 390 3 182 242
Erickson 1969 445 630 0 185 185
Ford 1974 375 500 0 125 125
Fruchthendler 1973 425 450 2 25 65
Gale 1970 385 420 1 35 55
Grijalva 1990 741 600 11 -141 79
Henry 1971 302 390 2 88 128
Holladay 1966 262 330 0 68 68
Hollinger 1966 481 770 3 289 349
Howell 1954 359 380 4 21 101
Hudlow 1964 324 390 5 66 166
Hughes 1938 333 290 2 -43 -3
Johnson 1991 359 430 2 71 111
Kellond 1960 448 660 0 212 212
Lawrence 1995 352 420 0 68 68
Lineweaver 1963 479 420 6 -59 61
Lynn/Urquides 1967 640 620 21 -20 400
Lyons 1975 316 450 2 134 174
Maldonado 1988 465 610 5 145 245
Manzo 1956 239 360 2 121 161
Marshall 1966 324 500 0 176 176
Menlo Park 1959 241 350 6 109 229
Miller 1981 620 530 13 -90 170
Mission View 1955 322 350 8 28 188
Myers/Ganoung 1967 446 590 5 144 244
Ochoa 1945 219 370 2 151 191
Oyama 2002 468 550 4 82 162
Robins 1995 476 570 2 94 134
Robison 1956 334 430 0 96 96
Rose 1993 640 660 1 20 40
Schumaker 1964 345 440 0 95 95
Sewell 1959 308 330 3 22 82
Soleng Tom 1987 464 570 2 94 134
Steele 1961 358 510 2 152 192
Tolson 1976 390 530 2 140 180
Tully 1968 482 590 4 108 188
Van Buskirk 1962 406 500 4 94 174
Vesey 1979 683 500 20 -183 217
Warren 1978 274 350 3 76 136
Wheeler 1961 324 590 0 266 266
White 1977 692 570 14 -122 158
Whitmore 1965 334 360 3 26 86
Wright 1964 447 440 7 -7 133

Middle schools

Minimum “optimal” enrollment: 650

School name Year built October 2011 enrollment Capacity (building) Capacity (portables) Available seats (building) Available seats (portables)
Booth-Fickett 1970 1138 1210 5 72 197
Carson 1973 504 830 0 326 326
Dodge 1970 410 345 0 -65 -65
Doolen 1972 639 1140 0 501 501
Gridley 1977 679 790 2 111 161
Hohokam 1990 387 700 3 313 388
Magee 1972 702 720 6 18 168
Mansfield 1962 685 810 0 125 125
Maxwell 1978 351 650 1 299 324
Miles ELC 1946 310 390 3 80 155
Roberts-Naylor 1970 648 830 0 182 182
Pistor 1978 1037 830 13 -207 118
Pueblo Gardens 1957 422 380 5 -42 58
Roskruge 1920 696 550 0 -146 -146
Safford 1956 782 980 0 198 198
Secrist 1973 425 650 0 225 225
Fort Lowell-Townsend 1965 555 650 0 95 95
Utterback 1976 752 880 5 128 253
Vail 1965 700 730 7 30 205
Valencia 1993 684 1075 0 391 391
Wakefield 1967 457 610 0 153 153
McCorkle 2011 552 950 0 398 398

High schools

Minimum “optimal” enrollment: 1,400

School name Year built Oct 2011 enrollment Capacity (building)` Capacity (portables) Avail seats (building) Avail seats (portables)
Catalina 1962 1224 1500 0 276 276
Cholla 1964 1615 1650 5 35 160
Howenstine 1975 148 130 12 -18 222
Meredith 2008 55 0 0 -55 -55
Palo Verde 1961 987 2070 0 1083 1083
Pueblo 1966 1696 1900 10 204 454
Rincon 1964 1085 1070 3 -15 60
Sabino 1975 1200 1950 0 750 750
Sahuaro 1969 1813 1950 0 137 137
Santa Rita 1971 1089 2070 0 981 981
Tucson 1958 3162 2900 0 -262 -262
University 1964 952 900 0 -52 -52

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