Metro East school consolidation plan drawing criticism -

Metro East school consolidation plan drawing criticism

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EAST ALTON, Ill. ( -

A vote to consolidate several local school districts in the Metro East is drawing criticism from many in the community. 

Around 2,000 students in the East Alton, East Alton- Wood River, and Wood River Hartford School Districts could become lumped together, providing what educators are calling a unified curriculum. 

The plan would have students from around the area studying the same material and equally prepare students for college. 

"A bigger district can offer more opportunities, both in curricular and extracurricular unifying because you've got greater numbers," said Superintendent of Wood River High School John Pearson. 

Dr. Pearson isn't publicly asking voters to say yes to the consolidation but does believe there are many benefits to streamlining all of the districts and working under the umbrella of one superintendent and one school board. 

Not everyone in the community is on board with the idea. The Save Our Schools Committee is concerned that consolidation could lead to staff reduction, larger class sizes and school closures. 

"They don't need as many staff people," says Dr. Linda Hoffman of the Save Our Schools Committee. "They may not need as many teachers, as well as administrators."

If the ballot measure passes next week a new board would be seated in April, leaving them only a couple of months to prepare for the next school year. 

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