Lisa Starr says she may be a bit biased, but when it comes to Arlington elementary schools, she thinks Corey Elementary is the best.
“There’s a lot of tradition at Corey,” said Starr, who is the school’s PTA president and the parent of two students there. “People have been here a long time and it makes it a really special place."
That’s why she had mixed emotions when she learned that Corey is being re-purposed as a dual-language fine arts academy.
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“Well, it’s sad for us to think that the school is changing,” said Starr.
The change is part of the $663.1 million bond package approved by voters back in May.
The Arlington Independent School District said it wants to give families a variety of educational opportunities and options, and because enrollment in that part of Arlington is declining, they thought it made the most sense to use the building for a district-wide academy.
“Corey, actually, as of last school year had 14 empty classrooms,” said Arlington ISD spokesperson Leslie Johnston. “So they had the space in that building already where we could start this program.”
Students who attend the academy will be taught the normal elementary school curriculum but with special emphasis on foreign languages and the arts.
The district is still finalizing what languages will be taught and other specifics. Parents interested in learning more about the academy are invited to attend a public meeting at Corey Elementary on Thursday, Oct. 23, starting at 6:30 p.m.
In the meantime, the district is working to rezone Corey Elementary’s students to either Moore or Wood elementaries.
Students currently in kindergarten through fifth grade at Corey Elementary will be allowed to stay there until they go to junior high. As they move on, the district will phase in a new grade level for the academy each year until the transition is complete.
“I think it’s good to have that option,” said Starr. “It’s great for the kids and their friends to be with each other until they get to junior high.”
Starr admits it won’t be easy saying goodbye to the school she and so many others have known for so long. But, long term, she thinks the district made the right call.
“It’s a good thing for South Arlington,” said Starr. “It’s neat that that will be right in our backyard. And I think it will benefit our kids.”
Multiple public meetings have been scheduled to discuss the new school boundaries:
- Moore Elementary – 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 21
- Wood Elementary – 6:30 p.m., Monday, Oct. 27
- Corey Elementary – 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 30