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Board Saves Cleveland NJROTC, Balances Budget

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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – St. Louis City’s Cleveland High School is off the chopping block.

After a month spent hearing pleas from students and staff Superintendent Kelvin Adams dropped his recommendation to close Cleveland NJROTC High School after years of declining enrollment.

“It wasn’t the passion that I did it, it was the fact that they increased their numbers, they had a real plan to change what happened in the school,” said Adams.

Cleveland NJROTC administrators said they plan to double the size of its incoming freshman class, and promised to keep aggressively increasing enrollment.

Board members governing St. Louis Public Schools followed superintendent Adams’ change of heart, but board chair Rick Sullivan warned — there’s still an elephant in the room. “It’s plain and simple, we have dramatically more high school space than we currently have students filling. We’ve got to find a way to fill the space with more students.”

The number of proposed employee reductions for next year was dropped from 134 to about 30.

The board did however approve the closure of two other proposed schools, Sherman Elementary and L’Ouverture Middle schools –  both schools were operating below 60 percent capacity. Adams said closing two out of the districts 21 schools will save the district $1.3 million next year.

Also in order to balance the budget a proposal to combine the district’s three tiers of start times into two was removed from the table. That plan would have cost just under $6 million, due to a need for more buses.

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