Blue Point School, one of the three primary schools that the Scarborough School Building Steering Committee is recommending to consolidate, is not expected to be able to keep up with population growth. The school’s small playground is located near e a busy street. Catherine Bart photo

SCARBOROUGH — As population increase affects school life, the Scarborough School Building Steering Committee recommended to the School Board on Dec. 5 consolidating the district’s primary schools.

If approved, Eight Corners, Blue Point and Pleasant Hill schools would be closed for a new, more up-to-date facility, said the committee members.

In a presentation to the board, representatives from the Building Steering Committee explained how consolidation would be the best way to ensure every student’s success.

With increasing enrollment and size constraints, the current schools will not be able to hold every student in the building, said committee Chair Andrew Bradley. As it stands now, 45 percent of students between all three primary schools would be forced into portable classrooms by 2025.

The committee, having met every week since October, has unanimously come to the conclusion that consolidation would be the best course of action, said Bradley.

School board committee member Hillory Durgin said that the committee voted unanimously on Nov. 14 to recommend consolidation to the school board..

“There was an individual who participated on the phone and expressed some concerns that we all debated, but ultimately that individual did vote support and it was unanimous,” she said.

The School Board is expected to have a final vote on Jan. 2, but there will be a public forum on Dec. 19 for the public to address any of its own concerns or questions about consolidation.

Under the committee’s expected timeline of events, a final referendum vote by November of 2020, Bradley said.

The committee showed the school board some problems that the current primary school buildings have, no drop-off or pick-up areas, no fire lane for emergency vehicles, windows that can only be reached by climbing on shelves, and doors that have to be locked from the outside were a few examples.

The option to renovate the schools instead of consolidate was discussed but eventually, the committee decided that it would not be a cost-effective option. According to the presentation, students would be displaced for too long and the results would not address the buildings’ size or design problems.

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