School closures and unintended consequences

The P-I has a follow-up article on the proposed Rainier Beach/Cleveland high school merger and the response of the community:

“The possible merger is troubling for some South Seattle parents, who say their schools are disproportionately targeted in the plan, and that disputes between rival gangs at the high schools could escalate with the change. They also wonder about class size at Cleveland and the fate of Rainier Beach’s powerhouse athletics.”

The Times has additional background on Rainier Beach, and a comparison chart between the two schools. The article mentions that “District staff members say they continue to evaluate the feasibility of combining the two schools, and haven’t ruled out moving Cleveland to Rainier Beach instead of the other way around.” Cleveland’s building was completely remodeled last year for $68 million.

Also on the school closure topic, former School Board member and Seattle Times reporter Dick Lilly suggests in a Crosscut editorial that closing schools such as Van Asselt that serve low-income families may drive those low-income families — in many cases, renters who are more easily able to pack up and move — out of the city.