A few weeks ago we learned about a school board meeting that reported an architect’s findings and recommendation that the West Carroll High School located in Savanna be closed and a new high school be built in Mount Carroll.
To the average citizen it sounded as though it was a “done deal” with no input from the community. Thankfully, now people are given a chance to voice their opinions and concerns.
Many years ago we were advised to join three school districts into one consolidated school district (Savanna, Thomson and Mount Carroll) for financial reasons and call it West Carroll.
It was done in a very fair manner for all towns and each town had a school. Thomson has already lost their school and now we are expected to give up a very good school in Savanna.
Let’s look at the reasons given. Asbestos tile flooring in the high school and the high school roof needs to be patched or replaced. As I understand it, the tile can be replaced with other tile (not asbestos tiles). End of asbestos problem. The roof needs to be patched or replaced. End of roofing problem. Compare the cost of bringing the West Carroll High School up to code to the cost of building a brand new school.
I would suggest that cooler heads need to prevail at this time. If I were to organize a committee to research this problem, I would ask the following people to serve on this committee.
I would ask David Engaldo to be chairman and retired administrators Bill Wright, Pam Delp and Greg Stott to serve on the committee. Tom Root probably has a better idea of the condition of the West Carroll High School. He is a carpenter/industrial arts teacher, now retired. He worked on all the Savanna school buildings for 23 years — Avenue, Lincoln, Chestnut Park and Savanna High School.
Recent janitors would be a great addition to a committee. Use the school board minutes of the last 20 years to secure dates and information of what has been done to be West Carroll High School building in Savanna.
We are a “throw-away society.” Wouldn’t it be more fiscally responsible to repair a good school and cost much less than building a new school building. Please let a committee of knowledgeable, fair-minded members of our community research this problem, present their findings on the condition of the West Carroll High School building in Savanna and present their recommendations to the school board.
No recommendation has been made to build a new high school in Mount Carroll. A recommendation was made to house high school students along with 7th and 8th graders at the current West Carroll Middle School building in Mount Carroll, with kindergarten through sixth grade students at the West Carroll Primary School building in Savanna. — Editor