Stuttgart plans to use temporary classrooms
April 4, 2008
STUTTGART, Germany — Temporary classrooms will be installed at two Stuttgart schools for the 2008-2009 school year because construction of permanent buildings has been delayed.
The temporary classrooms will be used to help offset an anticipated swelling in enrollment caused largely by incoming children of U.S. Africa Command staff.
Anticipated enrollment at Stuttgart’s schools is expected to be 2,280 for the start of the next school year, a 26-percent increase from one year earlier.
The classrooms will be placed at Boeblingen Elementary-Middle School and Patch Elementary School.
The delay was caused because the cost of permanent buildings was found to be higher than anticipated, due in part to the weakened U.S. dollar, Col. Richard M. Pastore Jr. told the audience Wednesday night at a town hall meeting.
Pastore, commander of Army Garrison Stuttgart, said he hoped the permanent classrooms would be ready by January.
About 200 people attended the meeting, which lacked the hostility of some previous gatherings. Issues such as overcrowded classes and long bus routes had caused parents to demand more information and input on school decisions affecting their children.
Rose Hubbard, who has three children attending Stuttgart schools, said she found the meeting to be productive.
“I liked it,” said Hubbard, who has three children in the school system. “Colonel Pastore was definitely in charge. The constant flow of information and time for questions — it was very well controlled.”
Questions were submitted in advance on index cards and answered one at a time, instead of parents being allowed to queue up to a microphone and speak their peace.
One parent, Nicole Hill, said she wished more opportunities for rebuttals had been allowed.
“I think it went well,” Hill said, “but I don’t think we could question the answers like we could before.
“I can understand their point in trying to avoid the mob scene like last year. That doesn’t facilitate anything good, either.”
Pastore said parents need to register their children as early as possible for the next school year in order for officials to best plan for bus routes, text books and support services. Preregistration in Stuttgart will be April 15-16 at Patch High School.
The schools and garrison also planned to formally address topics such as bullying and the abuse by school-age children of prescription drugs, in an effort to ward off potential problems.
Mike Thompson, superintendent of the Bavaria School District, also announced that Stuttgart schools next year will become part of the Heidelberg School District, giving the Heidelberg district a total of 15 schools, with Bavaria having 16.