Hale Cook Elementary reopening as Kansas City public school - KCTV5 News

Hale Cook Elementary reopening as Kansas City public school

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The Kansas School District is reopening Hale Cook Elementary School in south Kansas City.

Starting this fall, Hale Cook kindergarten and first-grade students will attend classes within Hartman Elementary.

"Construction and renovation of the Hale Cook building will commence only once interest in the program is sufficient to support two full classrooms of kindergarten students," according to a statement from the district.

Some Hartman students may be placed in the Hale-Cook classrooms at Hartman to maintain "a fair student-to-teacher ratio." The students from the two campuses will have a close relationship and participate in the same activities.

The announcement is the culmination of a three-year push by families and some district officials to return a school to this neighborhood.

"The decision was made to move forward with it," Kansas City Public Schools Superintendent Stephen Green said. "We saw enough indicators that we felt it was a good opportunity for this community to move forward. And for families, we welcome them into the new school district."

Green said the reopening is a victory for the district, families in the neighborhood and the community.

"We came together, rallied our neighbors, and are now reintroducing a great public education to a group of young families," Green said. "We still have plenty of work ahead, but this partnership will continue to pay dividends for our families."

Hale Cook is located at 73rd Street and Pennsylvania Avenue. Hartman is at 81st Street and Oak Avenue.

With the district in a lengthy desegregation battle, poor academic achievement resulting in the district losing accreditation and magnet schools attracting students, enrollment had plummeted at Hale Cook and the decision was made to close the school.

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