Richardson ISD Approves Consolidation Plan, Closing Four Schools Amid Budget Cuts

Richardson ISD votes to consolidate schools due to budget cuts, leading to the closure of four campuses.

In response to significant budget cuts and declining enrollment, Richardson Independent School District (ISD) has taken the decisive step to approve a consolidation plan that will shutter several school campuses, affecting elementary education within the district.

The decision comes as Richardson ISD grapples with a substantial budget deficit, exacerbated by a loss of 2,500 students during the pandemic, with projections estimating another 3,000 student decrease in the upcoming years, according to the district superintendent.

On Thursday evening, the school board convened to vote on altering attendance boundaries, a crucial step in implementing the consolidation plan, which targets the closure of four out of five identified schools.

Before the meeting commenced, concerned parents and students gathered outside the administration building in protest of the district’s “Project RightSize.” This contentious initiative proposes the closure of four schools and the rezoning of others, aiming to address the budget deficit while maintaining essential services and programs for students.

The schools slated for closure next year include Greenwood Hills, Spring Valley, Springridge, and Thurgood Marshall elementary schools, with Dartmouth Elementary among those expected to absorb displaced students through rezoning.

Following the board’s approval of the consolidation plan, emotions ran high among attendees, with some parents expressing disappointment and frustration. Many voiced their discontent, promising electoral repercussions for those who supported the decision.

Parent Josh Dennison remarked, “Based on how they’ve rolled out this process thus far, it’s definitely the outcome I anticipated.” Another parent, Sarah Pack, criticized the decision as “a rubber stamping of a bad plan that was poorly justified by the administration.”

Despite the dissent, a few parents voiced understanding of the district’s predicament, acknowledging the necessity of addressing the budget deficit, albeit with regret for the impact on affected families.

The district estimates that the closure of these schools will yield approximately $11 million in annual savings, although the decision remains a subject of contention among the community.


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