Update: Haven School Board votes to close Partridge Grade School

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HAVEN, Kan. Update Monday, Nov. 13:

The Haven School Board at its Monday night meeting voted 5-2 to close Partridge Grade School. There was a motion to turn the building into a K-8 school, but the board agreed to close the school completely.

Haven School District Superintendent Clark Wedel has said keeping the school running is costing too much for only having 51 students in kindergarten through sixth grade.

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The superintendent of the Haven school district says the budget is tight and closing one of the district's three elementary schools would help ease the burden.

Haven's Partridge Grade School has a new playground and new security cameras, but Haven School District Superintendent Clark Wedel says keeping the school running is costing too much.

"Really, what it comes down to for us is, how many elementary schools in a district our size can we continue to support?" Wedel says.

He says Partridge only has 51 students, ranging from kindergarten through sixth grade.

"Bottom line is our costs never stay the same," he says. "They are always going up. So when your enrollment is going down and your costs are going up, sooner or later you have to do something different."

Wedel told the school board it could save about $200,000 per year by closing Partridge and put that money back into programs it already supports.

One parent of a student at Partridge says this is not the first time she's had to explain the possibility of a new school to her kids. The school board has had budget concerns since last year.

Parent Kayla Pelkey thinks the district hasn't done enough to increase enrollment.

There are two other schools in the Haven school district students could transfer to, but Wedel says travel times for buses and families will likely increase.

A public hearing for the community to voice their concerns about the future of Patridge Grade School is set for Nov. 13. That night, the Haven School Board could take the vote on whether or not to close the school.