EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

March 31, 2013

Methuen schools to close day care

(Continued)

Scannell sent a letter to parents on Wednesday explaining the change and outlining before- and after-school rates, which range from $50 to $160 per month for the before school program depending on grade level and number of days per week, and $120 to $320 per month for the after-school program. Parents have the option of enrolling children in either or both.

School business administrator Glenn Fratto said the district would save about $60,000 from the busing contract, though nearly all of that portion of the expense was paid by day care fees.

Scannell said the building will be converted into a centralized storage facility for office supplies and other goods, which will free up much needed space currently used for storage in each school building.

The two certified teachers in the day care program will be assigned teaching positions in one of the grammar schools in the 2013-14 school year, and the five program assistants will be reassigned by the end of school on June 26. No one was laid off because of the change, Scannell said.

The superintendent had considered using the Central School off Lawrence Street, which formerly housed the School Department administrative offices and now hosts a ninth-grade campus while the high school is being renovated, as an early child care center that included the day care and all kindergarten classes.

But she said renovations that would be needed to use the building for young children would run at least $1.5 million. The city already spent about $2.5 million renovating the Central School for ninth-graders, money that came out of the $98 million high school project.

No decision has been made on what that building will be used for when the high school is completed in 2014.

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