Controversial Plans For Old Lebanon High School On Hold
by Emily Luxen
LEBANON Tenn.- Proposed plans for a Wilson County high school have parents and some board of education members at odds. The debate is on hold, for now, after school board members delayed a vote on turning the old Lebanon High School into a new middle school.
The proposed plan includes using the existing building to house students from three district K-8 schools. Director of Schools Mike Davis said the plan would relieve overcrowding issues at the elementary schools, and save the district money.
Parents argued the building is in poor condition, and is filled with mold and leaking water. They said it hasn't been used for a reason, and is not fit for students.
"That place is deplorable," said parent and Wilson County Commissioner Mike Justice, "Don't put my kid in that school. It's ridiculous."
Davis argued all the problems have been fixed, and students would only be using a portion of the building not affected by the mold. He said the facility includes science labs and more space for fine arts that should be utilized.
"The area that we are talking about using is newer construction and in better shape and better equipped than any facilities we are moving students from," said Davis.
After a lengthy debate, board of education members voted 5-0 to defer the vote on the plan. They will revisit the issue in January. Some did say they were open to exploring other options including adding on to the existing K-8 schools, or pursuing funding for a completely new middle school.
Parents who oppose the idea, said they will keep fighting.
"I just want to make sure they've researched what they are doing, and the school is safe," said parent Kellye Dykes, " I think that is what everybody wants."