Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Weast proposes transfering Kendale to Bells Mill

"Just days after their efforts to build an elementary school in Potomac were thwarted by the Montgomery County Council, school officials are floating a plan they hope will end the stalemate over the disputed construction project," the Washington Post reports.

"Superintendent Jerry D. Weast has proposed that the $32.8 million that would have gone toward building a 640-student school on Kendale Road, to replace the much smaller Seven Locks campus, be used to build a new Bells Mill Elementary campus. The plan, which five of the seven school board members support, would mean that Bells Mill, which is overcrowded and had three portable classrooms shut this year because of mold, would be renovated in August 2009 -- a year ahead of schedule."

Ken Hartman, aide to Councilman Howard Denis, dismissed the proposal: "We think it's a nice offer, but there are improvements to be made."

This proposal looks like the brainchild of school board member Steve "Abramoff" Abrams, currently the target of official wrongdoing allegations, who surfaced the idea of a Kendale solution for Bells Mill.

Abrams is on record as saying he wants to shut down the Seven Locks Elementary School because a parent filed a complaint against MCPS to the county Inspector General.