Transition begins for schools’ consolidation this September
Public schools are in the midst of preparing for mergers to ensure a smooth transition next school year when several elementary schools will be expanding kindergarten and their sixth grades transferred to new middle schools on Saipan.
One of the affected schools is Koblerville Elementary where early enrollment will be used to gauge the volume of students it may accommodate beginning school year 2014-2015.
Koblerville Elementary School principal Rizalina Purugganan announced an early enrollment from April 1 to 30 for kindergarten to fifth graders.
“We are trying to prepare for the transition for next school year and we need to determine student enrollment number from San Antonio, As Gonno, Koblerville, and Tottotville,” she told Saipan Tribune.
School year 2015 kicks off Phase 2 of the Middle School Concept approved by the Board of Education last year. In this phase, mergers will be seen at Gregorio T. Camacho and Tanapag elementary school, which will become a new middle school. GTC will be home to K-5th grade while Tanapag Middle School will accommodate 6th-8th graders.
Koblerville and San Antonio elementary schools will also be consolidated, where KES will be home to K-5th grade, while San Antonio Elementary School will become the San Antonio Middle School.
According to KES vice principal Jeremiah Benavente, the existing 5th grade and 6th grade students of Koblerville Elementary School will be given the San Antonio Middle School enrollment packet including the registration and other requirement needed for enrollment.
He said Koblerville Elementary School will collect the packet at the end of April and deliver the enrollment packet to San Antonio.
“The same with the SAES K-4th grade students, they will receive enrollment packet from Koblerville Elementary School, then we will pick up the packet from SAES at the end of April,” said Benavente, adding that parents may also directly enroll students at each respective school.
When asked what other preparations are ongoing at Koblerville Elementary, Benavente cited the need to address collateral equipment.
“We are in the process of preparing the collateral equipment needed for the transition. On Thursday, FNS [Food and Nutrition Services] will deliver 12 new cafeteria tables to Koblerville Elementary School,” he said.
Benavente said the school also conducted a transition meeting with Head Start parents last April 3, to inform parents about the open enrollment for kindergarten and to showcase what the school has to offer for their children.
He said kindergarten will be a full-day session (8am to 2:30pm) with 25 students in each classroom. They will have 50 slots available on a first-come, first-serve basis and will not accept registrations with incomplete documents.
“We are conducting the early enrollment to identify the number of classes we have to offer in first to fifth. Our tentative number of classes will be two kinder, five first grade, five second grade, five third grade, four fourth grade, and four fifth grade,” he said.
Since KES is K-6th grade school in previous years, Benavente said there is not going to be much adjustment for the students. The school, however, will have a bigger population next year, with the addition of about 200 more students.
“We will be needing more personnel to work with the students and at the school. Busing services will also be available, which is new to the students and to the school,” he added.