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APS votes to consolidate schools

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The Atlanta School Board has voted to move forward with its plan to consolidate and merge schools. The board voted 7-2 in favor of the plan. Superintendent Dr. Meria Carstarphen said the decision was was tough, but necessary. She believes the move will ultimately improve school performace overall.RELATED: APS unveils plan to consolidate elementary schoolsThe changes were recommended due to low enrollment at several elementary schools. The campuses on the list include Fain Elementary, Towns Elementary, Adamsville Primary and Whiteford Elementary. RELATED: APS looks at shutting down some schools, merging othersFrustrated parents gathered over the weekend and camped out Sunday night, saying the proposal will lead to larger class size - something that will not benefit student performance. They also worry about empty school buildings, fearing they will create blight and lower property values. "They have breached the contract with the parents and the community, and most importantly they have breach the contract with the children", frustrated parent, Shawnna Tavares-Hayes complained. The school board is expected to vote on the proposed closings at its regularly scheduled meeting Monday evening.RELATED: APS continues to refine turnaround planWATCH: Community activists rally against school consolodationIFrameOne stakeholder says the school closures are about more than meets the eye."It makes no sense to close schools on children when billions of dollars of development are coming into the area. You have a two billion stadium, but yet in the shadow, a closed Bethune Elementary, a closed Kennedy, which Impacts Washington High. The school board is a joke, they are pawns. Big business runs this," former parent Nathaniel Dyer said with confidence.Some community activists have pledged to overturn the district's decision and will meet next week for a strategy session.The plan will go into effect this fall for the 2017-18 school year.RELATED: Parents voice concerns about APS school closure plan

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