SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - Some Sarasota County parents are shocked receiving an email that the campus their kids go to school at will be closed at the end of this school year.
The Sarasota campus of the Island Village Montessori School will not be opening for the 2020-2021 school year – or ever again.
It’s part of their master plan for consolidation. They’ll be selling their 100-acre campus on Clark Road, and expanding their Venice campus on Pinebrook Road. However, they do plan on having this charter school still feel like a second home.
“Our goal is not to be a huge school. We want to keep our small community, family-feel, where we know all the students, and make connections with their families,” Jennifer Ocana, the Executive Director of the Island Village Montessori School, tells us.
The Sarasota Campus currently has 135 students from kindergarten to 5th grade, so this will allow all those students to continue their education until 8th grade at the Venice campus. The school board says this merge will not only enhance the learning experience with better programs, infrastructure and staffing, but be ready for the future.
“The way we can grow is to put all of our resources into one location instead of spreading them out between the two campuses. We could’ve continued this way, but we wanted to continue to grow and continue to make our campus and school better. Plus, also have the ability to offer it to more students,” Ocana explained.
However, many parents are concerned about this change. On the school’s Facebook page, you can see dozens of comments on the news with complaints – mainly about the commute.
“We’re going to work with the families. We already offering buses because many of our students at the Venice campus currently live in Sarasota. Many of them have graduated 5th grade in Sarasota and then came here,” Ocana said.
The Island Village Montessori School Board is now setting up meeting with every family to work with them and ease their concerns during this transition.