Community Upset Over Closing Fowler School


Emotions ran high in Gouverneur Monday night, as school officials decided to close Fowler Elementary.

Many feel it's a centerpiece of the community.

"It's a terrible, horrible thing and I hate to see that school close," said Susan Fenlong.

"I really think they're not considering all the other options that there are out there."

Members of the Gouverneur Central School board voted to close Fowler at the end of this school year.

District officials say the decision was a long time coming, but it was still a difficult one.

Gouverneur is dealing with a shrinking budget.

"This is a last resort," said school Superintendent Lauren French.

"This has been a very difficult decision for the board," she said, "it's been difficult for the staff and the community."

The issue of legality was raised -- whether or not the school district even has the authority to close Fowler Elementary.

"We had a document back in 1949 that said if that school ever did close, it was up to the town of Fowler residents to vote on that whether they wanted it to close or not," Dave Spilman said.

Parents upset about the closing say they're going to look into taking legal action to try to reverse the decision.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016
, Watertown, NY

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