Dodds Grade School Considers Dissolving

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By Matthew Searcy

JEFFERSON COUNTY -- Dodds grade school may soon close its doors. In recent years, the school had to cut extra curricular activities because of a reduced budget.   

Dodds leaders are strongly considering a move to annex the school into the Ina grade school district. If the school dissolves into Ina, they would receive more money from the state, which would allow them to spend more on student education.  
 
"We want to be able to offer the best we can possibly offer to kids," says Dodds Principal Craig Clark. "We don't want to continue just the status quo, where we can get by."
 
Consolidating with Ina and Opdyke Belle Rive last spring was suppose to fix the school's budget problem, but the move didn't receive enough support from Opdyke voters. 
 
"We had to come up with a backup plan," explains Clark. "With Ina, one of the options that we have under the state school code is that we can dissolve and annex into their district."
 
The two schools already share a bookkeeper and have merged their sports programs. If they decide to dissolve, it would not require a vote and would allow Dodds' students to reinstate recently cut programs like art and band.  
     
"It would be good for the kids because there is music here and art classes, and they are missing out on that at Dodds," says Ina parent Roni Schafer.  
 
School leaders are still looking for feedback before a petition to dissolve is filed. Clark says many Dodds residents support the reasons behind dissolving, but change can be difficult. 
 
"For 55 years they have had their school there. With this process we are going through, it's not gonna change. The school is going to continue to be there. It's just that it's going to be under a different district name." 
 
 
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