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Parents protest the possibility of closing a historic Socorro ISD building

EL PASO, Texas (KVIA) -- The 100th anniversary celebration of an El Paso school drew a group of protestors Saturday. Many of them were parents, and they told ABC-7 they were there to ask the Socorro Independent School District (SISD) not to relocate students who attend class inside the Escontrias Historic Building.

"It's actually one of the oldest -- or the oldest -- in the district, in SISD," said Socorro's mayor, Ivy Avalos. "It's a historical building... We here in Socorro love to preserve our history, and our culture. So one of the buildings here, I'm hoping that we can preserve it for the kids."

On Monday, May 6th, SISD's financial officer, Vicky Perez, listed possible ideas for the district to save money. The closure of the Escontrias historical building was listed as an option, meaning some students would have to be moved. This comes after the district announced a more than $30 million deficit earlier this year.

Perez informed district leaders that the move could save SISD $1,000,000.

One parent who participated in Saturday's protest said she is concerned for her son, as well as other students.

"I'm considering that they don't have any space for him. I don't want him to be in a room full of other little kids, like, at maximum capacity. I don't want the other kids that are supposed to be at the elementary school also exposed to that," said Stacy Morales.

SISD's interim superintendent, James Vasquez, spoke on the issue at Wednesday's board meeting.

"There are no plans to cut the early childhood classes at the campus. In reviewing operational efficiencies, the district has discussed the possibility of moving classes out of the historical building and into the Escontrias STEAM Academy main building, with some specialized units potentially being relocated to other campuses in the Socorro community. There have been no discussions of removing grade levels from the school, specifically Escontrias STEAM Academy will continue to serve Pre-K students. Again, this is one item that the district is looking at but at this time no recommendation has been made," Vasquez said Wednesday.

ABC-7 will update you on any decisions made involving Escontrias historic building on air, online, and on the KVIA News App.

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Kerry Mannix


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