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Semi Burns Outside Coventry Home Depot

Up to You: Oak Haven Elementary School

If it were up to you, what would you like to see become of the vacant elementary school?


All across town, Coventry has its fair share of vacant buildings. Some have been empty for years while others see a rotating crop of businesses.

But, if it were up to you, what would you like to see happen to these buildings? We'll feature one empty building, lot or area in Coventry and ask our readers what they'd like to see there.

A bowling alley? A clothing store? A Japanese restaurant? A movie theater? What do you want?

This week: In 2009, Oak Haven Elementary School closed due to financial constraints and since then there has been some talk about re-opening it if All Day Kindergarten was ever brought to Coventry (highly unlikely at the moment). Town Council President Gary Cote has also looked into making the building a charter school in the future.

If it were up to you, what should happen to this building?

Sound off in the comments.

Christine Moran March 25, 2012 at 05:42 PM
I'm all set with "affordable housing" in my neighborhood. There is more than enough of these developments in our area (with more being built). That will do nothing to add to our tax base while continuously using our resources. We can't afford that. A playground/park would be nice. Maybe moving the library there could be an idea. Better yet bring it back as a school and ease overcrowding at Tiogue and Washington Oak.
Dale B. April 09, 2012 at 01:53 AM
Open it back up. It's in way better shape than Tiogue school. NO "Affordable" housing in THIS neighborhood. Theres a river between us and West Warwick for a reason. We don't need Echo Valley II here.
coventry voter-Jay April 09, 2012 at 12:03 PM
Well affordable housing will only cost us more in the long run. The school population in Cov has dropped by 800 students over the last 7 or so years. Some now attend private school and some neighborhood like oak haven just don't have the same # of children living there as 30 years ago. . The neighborhood school concept just doesn't work today. You cannot support the concept and pay teachers 80K year. . The numbers do not lie. Salaries and fringes are over double what they were 15 years a go. I'm not saying its wrong just making a point. Salaries are 80% of the cost of running the school. . The CTA knows this and is way ahead of the curve on negotiation too. They knew school populations were on the decline and negotiated lower class sizes during the decline Brilliant!!. Lower the class size during a decline in population gives the appearance of little cost to lower the student/teacher ratio. It sets the stage for additional stipends to teachers if and when the population goes up again which it will.. . One way get more kids in the school, Push for affordable housing and section-8. Not only will you get more kids you will get more special needs kids. That cost can be as high as 18-25K per student.
Bren April 09, 2012 at 08:30 PM
First, a road from Princeton Ave connecting to Sheltra should be made!!!!!!
Dale B. April 10, 2012 at 02:31 AM
I've been living in Oak Haven for 48 years, and there are more new residents with children than I've ever seen. The last year the school was open, the neighborhood was mobbed with parents dropping kids off. I don't know where declining numbers are coming from, I've seen the number of kids now having to go to Tiogue, in front my house is a bus stop, and all the busses are packed. Open the school again and knock down Tiogue and make a playground over there. Oh yeah, just what we need, section 8........ not in my neighborhood. This town is already changed enough. IMOPO


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