Parents provide feedback on QPS restructuring plans

The Quincy Public School system wants to move forward with its re-structuring plans, but where does the public stand?

Quincy Public Schools business manager Joel Murphy presented three re-structuring plans at a public forum Wednesday night at Baldwin School.

About 25 people attended the forum.

Each plan proposes building new schools and improving old ones within the district. They would also support either a K-thru-5 or K-thru-6 grade system.

Total cost of the different plans ranges from 75 to 85 million dollars - original estimates given at a November school board meeting were incorrect. Funding for the plans could come from building bonds or a county-wide sales tax.

Murphy feels Wednesday's forum was a positive step towards making changes.

"I think people got the message that we were trying to deliver and went away understanding the direction we're trying to go," he said.

It appears that public reaction to the proposed plans is mixed, however.

Some feel that funding should go towards new facilities instead of maintaining old ones.

"I would love to see the new changes made, I love the K through 5 and the high school all together. If my taxes go up for my children to have a better education, I'm all on board for that," said Quincy parent Jessica Dedert.

The plans were met with criticism as well.

One parent felt that the proposed plans were not effective and suggested alternate ideas. Some questioned the costs involved and estimates of potential savings should a plan be implemented.

But Murphy feels the three plans presented are the best fit moving forward.

"As we went back and looked at the parameters and guidelines that were kind of established through community input from forums and surveys and what the board is informed with, the plans that best fit those parameters were the 3 that kind of came through tonight," he said.

A final recommendation on which plan to implement will be made to the school board on December 18th. The earliest the public would vote on any changes would be March 2014.

A second public forum will be held Thursday night at 7 p.m. in the Baldwin School Round Room.