RACINE — Nine elementary schools will close in the Racine Unified School District as part of a plan to modernize the district. A unanimous vote at Monday’s school board meeting put the plan in motion. Many of the schools will be replaced by five newer facilities in the years to come.
The schools that will close are Giese Elementary, Red Apple Elementary, Schulte Elementary, Roosevelt Elementary, Janes Elementary, Jefferson Lighthouse Elementary, North Park Elementary, West Ridge Elementary, and Jones Elementary.
In their place, the proposal calls for five new schools. Two elementary schools, two middle schools, and one K-8 facility. Part of the reason according to the district for the move is the population shift of residents towards areas like Caledonia and Sturtevant.
District Superintendent Dr. Eric Gallen says overall the move will provide a better experience for kids. “This is about efficiencies and consolidation. This gives us an opportunity to give our kids better facilities experience. So it’s not just closing schools, it’s really expanding the opportunities that we have available to our students” says Gallien.
No construction will start for at least a year according to the district. Many students in school now will never see a change. The entire project will take a decade to complete. After the first of the year, funding will have to be finalized to move forward with the project. The district expects to keep residents in the loop with a major project update every November.