Students rally in effort to save small San Lorenzo arts school

Students, staff and parents from East Bay Arts High School in the San Lorenzo Unified School District are fighting to keep their small school open.

The School Board is considering a proposal to close the small learning community of 191 students and merge it with another science and tech school to save $400,000.

"I am confused and upset this proposal was brought to us at end of September and told the decision will be made at the beginning of November," parent Kelsey Moran said. "East Bay Arts is a community where every student feels valued and accepted for who they are and this district should be studying this school and learning from it instead of trying to shut it down."

Nearly the entire student body showed up to Tuesday night's school board meeting to state their case to keep the school open.

"It just breaks my heart that my dream high school might close," said student Logan Heckman.

"It feels like a small town, close knit community, where people are supported," teacher Andrew Champion told the Board. "Whether you're an athlete or scholar, different in some way, that small learning environment is something families want."

Many expressed concern their enrollment has declined over the past five years because the school was not allowed to recruit at the junior high level.

"Please take the handcuffs off ,take the shackles off," teacher Douglas Spalding told the Board. "Let us recruit students to come to our school."

Some on the Board expressed concern about the timeline to make the decision.

"I feel like this is missing information to make a very important decision," Board Member Janet Zamudo said. The San Lorenzo Unified School District Board meets October 20th to discuss options.

A final vote on whether to close East Bay Arts High School is expected November 3rd. 

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