Foss High School students fighting to save school



Posted on January 25, 2011 at 9:52 AM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 25 at 10:18 AM

TACOMA, Wash. -- Numerous parents and students in Tacoma are sounding off over the possible closure of Foss High School.

The school could be on the chopping block because of the state’s budget crisis. A series of meetings about the budget crisis and its impact on the school district begins Tuesday night at First Creek Middle School in Tacoma.

Students have launched an online campaign to save their school. They have a Facebook page called “Save Our Home” and a website called “101 Reasons Why Foss is Boss.”  On both pages, students, parents and teachers are writing messages about why they think Foss should not close.

Recently the Superintendent of Tacoma Public Schools proposed temporarily closing Foss High beginning next fall. The move would reportedly save $2 million. With more than 1,100 students, Foss has the lowest enrollment among Tacoma’s five high schools.

The superintendent told the Tacoma News Tribune it's a way to avoid more painful district wide cuts. He told the paper doing this would result in modest class size increases and temporary school closures, but school programs could stay intact.

One Foss High School teacher said he realizes the school district needs to do something, but closing Foss High School is not the answer.

"People are concerned and they’re feeling that somebody else is going to make a decision purely on financial matters and not on academic matters," said John Wrigley, teacher. “Students should be first.”

The other cost cutting options include closing several elementary schools, laying off dozens of school district employees and draining the district’s $30 million reserve fund down to $10 million. All of these options are still being discussed.

Tuesday night’s school district meeting will be from 6:00-7:00 p.m. at First Creek Middle School.

The next four meetings will be at the following locations; all meetings will be from 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, January 26 at Giaudrone Middle School
Tuesday, February 1 at Jason Lee Middle School
Wednesday, February 2 at Truman Middle School
Thursday, February 3 at Meeker Middle School