KenTon Parents to Meet Over Consolidation

March 31, 2014 Updated Mar 31, 2014 at 7:39 AM EDT

By WKBW News

March 31, 2014 Updated Mar 31, 2014 at 7:39 AM EDT

KENMORE (WKBW) The Kenmore Town of Tonawanda School District continues to grapple with four different consolidation plans that involve school closings, and Monday night is the last chance for parents to have a say in the future of their schools.

It is all to close a three-point-one million dollar budget gap that the district is facing next year. So the school board came up with four different consolidation plans, all that involve closing schools, to make up for the shortfall.

Monday night at 4 and 7pm, the last parent meetings on those plans will be held before the board makes a final decision.

Administrators say this is an extremely difficult situation, as they work through which of the four options is best for the district and its students.

"The only thing in my opinion that is tougher to close in a community than a school is a church. Who wants to close a school?" KenTon Superintendent Mark Mondanaro said.

All four plans involve redistricting and closing an elementary and middle school. Last year, the district saved one point seven million dollars by closing Jefferson Elementary, but KenTon is facing another financial shortfall, and has to cut yet again.

"I'm a little disappointed. It seems like that the entire time my child will be going to school it's going to be cut cut cut," parent Mary Atlas said.

"The district is trying to make good choices and we just want the best for our kids," parent LeAnn Vogt said.

School Board President Bob Dana says he believes parents favor the plans that call for deeper cuts up front, rather than small cuts now that would put the district back in a similar spot down the road.

Monday night's meetings will be held at Kenmore East High School in the auditorium. The first starts at 4pm, the second at 7pm. The KenTon board is expected to vote on a consolidation plan Tuesday night.