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After Closing Schools, District Proposes Adding Portable Classrooms

Phyllis Fletcher

The Seattle School District has proposed adding up to 26 portable classrooms. This comes just a couple years after the district closed several schools. Now, school officials say they have to accommodate more students. KUOW's Phyllis Fletcher reports.


District staff have been holding meetings at schools around the city. They wanted to explain how crowded some schools are, and what their options are for doing something about it. It was an issue on the campaign trail when four school board members ran for re–election.

It's been an issue for children who've sat in class in hallways, and for parents who tried to get their kids out of portable classrooms — little mini–buildings that sit outside the main school building.

And now, the school district has proposed adding 15 to 26 portables at elementary schools around the city. It's all because enrollment at the school district has grown, and the district has less space than it did a few years ago when it closed some buildings.

Marty McLaren is the newly elected board member who represents West Seattle. Her opponent voted, along with the majority of the board, to close Cooper Elementary in West Seattle. McLaren campaigned on the idea that the closure of Cooper caused part of the overcrowding problem that exists now.

Today, McLaren says the closure of Cooper is water under the bridge, and that board members have to approve a solution. They're scheduled to do that next month.

Other ideas include opening a couple of closed buildings as temporary schoolhouses and changing some boundaries that determine where kids go to school based on where they live.

I'm Phyllis Fletcher, KUOW News.

© Copyright 2011, KUOW

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