Broadmoor Neighborhood Association meeting to discuss future of shuttered Arthur Circle Elementary
SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - What will happen to Arthur Circle Elementary? That’s the major question the nearby community will discuss Tuesday evening (Sept. 21) during a planned Broadmoor Neighborhood Association meeting.
The meeting is taking place inside the gymnasium of Broadmoor Presbyterian Church at 6:30 p.m.
Arthur Circle is one of three Caddo Parish schools closed in 2020 due to a $12 million budget shortfall and a decline in enrollment. The other schools closed are Mooretown Elementary and Jack P. Timmons Elementary
“We’ve lost Arthur Circle Elementary and that’s a concern, so we want to help guide the school board in what happens there,” said Bill Robertson, vice president and a founder of the Broadmoor Neighborhood Association. “I personally look forward to offering a resolution which urges the school board to hire professional help to assess the value of these closed schools.”
According to Robertson, the nearly 13-acre property, constructed in 1955, could be turned into a truancy center for the school district. That was an idea floated by Christine Tharpe, District 8 board member for Caddo Parish Public Schools.
“The biggest issue I would think for the neighborhood is public safety,” said Robertson. ”So the question is, what impact, if any, will the truancy center have on the safety of the people living in the vicinity of the school?”
The idea proposed by Tharpe involves Volunteers for Youth Justice, a local non-profit group. According to Robertson, the organization would lease the property from the school board and use the facility as a multi-purpose center to deal with truancy-related issues.
“We will give the floor to Christine Tharpe... and let her describe her idea for a truancy center at Arthur Circle Elementary School,” he said. “What we do best is allow public issues to be aired in an adult, civilized environment and these are issues that impact our neighborhood.”
Alternatively, in a news release, Robertson wrote that a private real estate developer, E&L Development Co., drew up a plan for construction of 25 $300 to $400,000 single-family lots, green space, and a commercial storage facility inside the Arthur Circle building.
Robertson says the plan was given to school board leaders, but no decisions have been made.
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