“How do they expect our kids to ride on a bus for over an hour, when there is a perfect school two miles from our house?”
Area resident Mikayla Ramsey expressed her concern on the possible closing of one of two elementary schools in the county. The two smallest schools in Clay County, H.E. White Elementary School in Bomont and Lizemore Elementary School in Lizemores, are both being considered for closure following a special circumstance review initiated by the WV Board of Education earlier this year.
H.E. White Elementary is a school that has taken pride in being the center of the community in Bomont. From annual ramp dinners, fall carnivals, dances, and more, it acts as not just a school, but a community center.
Enrollment numbers have decreased for the little school over the past few years, leaving the fate of this school in the School Board’s hands. Numbers have decreased, but why? Could it be because one bus runs the entire school’s route? The transportation is just one of the issues that have aided in the registration drop. With neighboring Kanawha County opening a brand new school in the coming year, many have made the switch out of county all together.
Does that mean that these smaller schools are any less important that the larger elementary schools in the county?
There are many questions being voiced by area parents, with few answers currently available, making it a frustrating situation for many. Overcrowding is one of the biggest areas of concern, with parents voicing opposition to their children joining the students at Clay Elementary School should H.E. White shut its doors. That, coupled with a long bus ride to get to Clay Elementary, doesn’t instill confidence that this is the best decision for the students the closures will be affecting.
Interim Superintendent Joan Haynie said that no decisions have been made at this time, but “they are trying to cover all of our bases.”