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Future Of Lewisboro Elementary A Major Topic For Officials

Lewisboro Elementary School
Lewisboro Elementary School Photo Credit: Tom Auchterlonie
The Katonah-Lewisboro school board at its Sept 15, 2014 meeting.
The Katonah-Lewisboro school board at its Sept 15, 2014 meeting. Photo Credit: Tom Auchterlonie

CROSS RIVER, N.Y. -- The fate of the shuttered Lewisboro Elementary School has emerged as a topic of interest for local officials.

At Monday’s meeting, the Katonah-Lewisboro school board was told a committee is forming to review possible uses for the building. It was indicated that reusing the school, which closed this summer as part of a consolidation of the district's elementary schools, may be among the board’s goals for the 2014-15 school year.

Interim Superintendent John Goetz said possible committee members could include himself, Assistant Superintendent for Business Michael Jumper and the district’s attorney. School Board President Marjorie Schiff said Board Trustees Peter Treyz and Stephanie Tobin also were interested.

Goetz said establishing the committee should include creating a meeting calendar and ground rules. He said community input would be sought, noting "the people have a vested interest in this."

The board also was told a committee meeting could be held before the next school board meeting. Schiff said the committee's report to the board should include a potential timeline and a proposal for community involvement. Goetz concurred with Schiff, explaining  that approach is what is expected.

The school's future use also is a topic at the town government level. At a League of Women Voters event held last week in Katonah, Lewisboro Supervisor Peter Parsons called LES the town’s “biggest single opportunity.” He suggested possible uses such as additional office space for the town government and a venue for teenagers.

“I want to make it a town asset because it's owned by the taxpayers already,” Parsons said.

The forum held at the Katonah Village Library was called State of the Towns. It included remarks from Parsons, Bedford Supervisor Chris Burdick and North Salem Supervisor Warren Lucas.

Parsons previously brought up reusing LES at the school board’s Sept. 4 meeting, video shows.

In his remarks during public comment – it starts at around two hours and 38 minutes in the video – Parsons suggested a joint work session for the school board and town board. He also floated some ideas for the building, including having an institution such as Bard College take it over and hosting town offices.

At the Sept. 15 school board meeting, Goetz suggested having town representation on the committee, with Parsons as a possible member.

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