Roseburg council supports keeping Rose School open

ROSEBURG, Ore. -- A large crowd showed up Monday night at the Roseburg city council meeting to ask the city to support keeping Rose Elementary School open.

The school is one of two that were listed as possible closure candidates if the district had to shut down schools to save money.

Residents of the Rose district packed the council chambers with signs and t-shirts, and their message was clear: They want Rose Elementary to stay open because it's a big part of their community.

Some members of the council felt the city shouldn't take a stand one way or the other on the closure of a school, but others felt they needed to let the school board know how they felt.

"I don't think any of us here, and I don't think any of them in that group want to close a school, and it just seems like we should be thanking them for their service regardless of the outcome, instead of telling them, "We're smarter than you are, and we're going to make a resolution,"" said Tom Ryan.

"If we're convinced, and I am, that our citizens strongly believe this is an adverse effect on our city, then we have an obligation to our citizens to support them in that and be their voice," said Steve Kaser.

School board chairman Joe Garcia told the council that no final decision has been made to close any school, and they're looking at other options. "Any school, it's a travesty," he said. "I understand the city's commitment to Rose, I understand the issues it presents, and the school board will take any input that you have and we'll consider it strongly regardless of whether it's in a resolution or not."

They eventually passed the resolution supporting keeping the school open, but the final decision will be up to the school board.