The Boston school board voted late Wednesday to close three schools in the district by the end of the 2021-2022 school year.
Washington Irving Middle School in Roslindale, Jackson-Mann K-8 School in Allston and James P Timilty Middle School in Roxbury will be closed as part of a larger plan to phase out middle schools and making elementary and secondary schools absorb 6 -8 years.
Five committee members voted in favor of the resolution Wednesday night while two abstained.
The decision comes after years of voting to reduce the number of times a student would need to move between schools.
“We don’t know for sure that it will work,” BPS school committee member Dr. Hardin Coleman said in a virtual meeting on Wednesday. “But I strongly support this decision to go K-6, 7-12 so we can work through our middle school issues, the performance issues that we have, and engage the kids earlier.”
In addition to improving school performance, the district said it needed more building space.
Irving Middle School and Jackson-Mann will become a K-6 school while the building that houses Timilty Middle School has yet to be designed.
This decision has sown uncertainty among parents and their advocates.
“Families deal with everyday things and now this added challenge of ‘where will my 6th grader go, where will my 7th grader go, where will my 8th grader go? “said School Facts Boston Family Advisory Board Director Vernée Wilkinson.
BPS Superintendent Brenda Cassellius hopes closing schools will attract more students, retain them and save them from having to change schools twice.
Cassellius noted that teachers and staff would continue to work at BPS and transfer to other schools.
Only two colleges will remain through next summer: UP Academy Boston and Frederick Middle School.