WAMU 88.5 : News

New School Site Selection Angering Many In Montgomery County

Play associated audio

The beginning of the problem dates back about 30 years, to a time when the number of students was declining, says James Sung of Montgomery County Public Schools.

"Back in the early and mid-'80s, we closed approximately 50 schools because of the downtrend in student enrollment," he says. "We pretty much surplussed all those properties to the county, which many of them became parks."

Some of those parks are now slated to have schools built right back on top of them. Rock Creek Hills Park in Kensington is one of them, but the decision to build a new middle school there has infuriated many neighbors.

Some, including Shannon Hamm, believe the park is too small to build a school that will give students the same education provided at the middle school that currently serves the area: Westland Middle School.

"If a school was opened at that site in 2015, it would be inadequate from day one," Hamm says.

Council members have expressed their disappointment that parks are being removed, and that school officials didn't include more public input in their decisions.


From Trembling Teacher To Seasoned Mentor: How Tim Gunn Made It Work

Gunn, the mentor to young designers on Project Runway, has been a teacher and educator for decades. But he spent his childhood "absolutely hating, hating, hating, hating school," he says.

How Do We Get To Love At 'First Bite'?

It's the season of food, and British food writer Bee Wilson has a book on how our food tastes are formed. NPR's Scott Simon speaks with her about her new book, "First Bite: How We Learn to Eat."

Osceola At The 50-Yard Line

The Seminole Tribe of Florida works with Florida State University to ensure it that its football team accurately presents Seminole traditions and imagery.

Payoffs For Prediction: Could Markets Help Identify Terrorism Risk?

In a terror prediction market, people would bet real money on the likelihood of attacks. NPR's Scott Simon speaks with Stephen Carter about whether such a market could predict — and deter — attacks.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.