South Bend Schools considers consolidating to two high schools

NOW: South Bend Schools considers consolidating to two high schools

SOUTH BEND, Ind. - A new proposal from South Bend Community School Corporation suggests leaving just two high schools open.

South Bend Schools released three potential scenarios for its long-range facilities master plan, Monday. The proposals are clear to note there has not been a final decision, and consolidation isn't likely before the 2024-25 school year. 

Enrollment across South Bend Schools has declined more than 25% over the last 15 years; with 21,659 students enrolled in 2007, 15,965 enrolled in 2022, and enrollment expected to drop to 14,200 in 2024. SBCSC says eight out of 15 elementary schools and four out of seven middle schools are below 75% capacity. 

Every high school, other than Adams, is below 60% capacity according to South Bend Schools. 

The School Corporation is now looking for community feedback on three scenarios it's considering for its long-ranger facilities plan. South Bend Schools says the final recommendation to the Board of Trustees could be some combination of the proposals. 

SBCSC long-range facilities master plan scenario summaries by

"Scenario A" would keep four high schools open, while Muessel and Warren Elementary Schools would have to vacate (meaning they would close or be repurposed). Scenario A would lead to 77% occupancy, cost $296.2 million, and save roughly $584,000. 

"Scenario B" would get schools up to 84% occupancy by vacating Warren Elementary and Clay High Schools, costing $260.9 million while saving $1.3 million. 

"Scenario C" would leave just two public high schools, vacating Warren Elementary, Jackson Middle, and Clay High Schools while turning Riley into a regular middle school. South Bend Schools says Scenario C would leave capital costs around $241.9 million, save $2.1 million, and lead to 87% occupancy. 

South Bend Schools is soliciting feedback through an online survey until February 19. It's also available in Spanish. At the end of the survey, there's an option to sign up for one of the virtual community meetings happening next week.

SBCSC is hosting one-hour, in-person community feedback meetings over the next two days.

  • February 7: 5:30-6:30, 7:00-8:00 at Dickinson Fine Arts Academy, 4404 Elwood Ave. 46628
  • February 7: 5:30-6:30, 7:00-8:00 at Edison Middle School, 2701 Eisenhower Dr. 46615
  • February 8: 5:30-6:30, 7:00-8:00 at Jackson Middle School, 5001 S. Miami Rd. 46614
  • February 8: 5:30-6:30, 7:00-8:00 at Clay International Academy, 52900 Lily Rd. 46637

The full presentation can be watched here

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