15-day appeal period begins

On Monday, July 16, the city’s Development Review Commission put its final stamp of approval on Lake Oswego School District’s plan to site up to four portable units (housing eight classrooms) at River Grove Elementary School, although the district plans to use only one next year.

The DRC held a public hearing in front of a small audience of community members on Monday, July 2 and gave the district preliminary approval that night.

The DRC approved the application with a few conditions. First, the school district will be asked to construct a pathway in front of the building to accommodate increased pedestrian traffic because of a higher population of students. Second, the school is held to an enrollment cap of 460 students for the school.

The approval on Monday triggered a 15-day appeal period. Citizens opposing the decision must appeal to the city council by Tuesday, July 31 at 5 p.m.

School board members have expressed concern over the possibility of an appeal, as the plan received some community backlash during earlier discussions about pursuing portables at River Grove.

The majority of a south side parent committee did not support portables at River Grove, however some members differed from their colleagues and strongly advocated for siting portables at River Grove until a new wing can be built.

The portables will accommodate a larger student body, welcoming roughly half of the Bryant Elementary School students, whose school is being closed and repurposed as a part of a new 6-8 middle school campus.

As a plan B, the school board approved a proposal to site River Grove kindergarten at the Bryant campus for the 2012-2013 school year and offered to waive the fee for full-day kindergarten for River Grove parents for the inconvenience. It also plans to convert a computer lab into a classroom at River Grove with the purchase of a mobile lab cart, as well as open up another room by holding music classes in the gym.

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