GRANBY, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - Parents in the Granby school system are expressing concerns following the district's proposal to move sixth grade students into the high school.
According to documents posted on the school district's website, they want to move the sixth graders from the newly-renovated East Meadow Elementary School to the high school, because of capacity issues and growing classes.
"I think, if you're going to have me vote to raise my taxes, you should probably give me what you told me you were offering," Granby father Jeremie Lapointe tells us.
Jeremie Lapointe says, in 2016, he voted in favor of renovation on the East Meadow Elementary School in Granby, which, at the time, was billed as pre-k through sixth grade school, according to town documents posted online.
Lapointe says the school district is moving in a different direction, trying to move sixth grade to the high school.
The district, in school committee meeting minutes posted online, says there is no longer space in East Meadow.
"Now they're deciding that there's not enough room for the sixth grade, because now they're bringing in pre-k, which was only supposed to be one classroom, and now they're bringing in two and they're opting to have more space for school choice, which is following the money. It's not following what us taxpayers decided we wanted to have," continued Lapointe.
Lapointe, who's the father of a soon-to-be sixth grade girl, explains why he's concerned beyond not getting what he paid for.
"We're going to send her, an 11-year-old, fifty-five-pound girl into school with a bunch of grown men. By 18 years old. you're a grown man. It's not reasonable," stated Lapointe.
The school superintendent claims the sixth graders would be in a separate hallway of the school from the older students, except in shared six to eighth grade spaces for special subjects.
She says the sixth graders would have their own bathroom.
Western Mass News looked at a floor plan and noticed the media center, accessible to all high schoolers,is right next to the proposed sixth grade bathroom.
When we raised the question to the superintendent, she claims media center teachers could monitor older students to make sure they don't use the bathroom intended for sixth graders.
"The building's not structured to separate a middle school model and a high school model," Granby parent Kim Goldsmith says.
Kim goldsmith is another parent who's concerned.
She says the new plan isn't fair to the sixth graders, who, she feels, will be unfairly separated from a traditional school experience.
"It's basically like you're telling these kids have nowhere to belong. There's nowhere for them at East Meadow. There's no place for them at the high school. I just feel like a shunning them," added Goldsmith.
The vote to decide whether or not this proposal will go through is set to happen on February 25.