On September 15, 2020 the School Board voted 5-2 to repurpose the Friedell Middle School building at the end of the 2021-2022 school year.
Highly Gifted Programming:
Friedell is one of several middle schools that offer Highly Gifted (HG) programming. This program option will continue at our middle schools, even after Friedell has closed. Currently, HG programming is offered at John Adams and Kellogg Middle Schools in addition to Friedell. The District intends on expanding HG programming at all of our middle schools, including the new middle school which is set to open in the Fall of 2022.
Reuse of the Building:
The District intends to repurpose the building for programming which is currently operating at other locations. For instance, the gymnasium will become the District’s gymnastics center. Currently, the District leases space at Gage East for gymnastics. The District is also leasing space for the Middle School Right Fit program. This program supports our students who may not accelerate in the traditional middle school. This program would move into a District building at ESC and collocate with the Phoenix Academy, which would allow for efficiencies with staffing and space usage. One of the current programs at ESC called Rochester Academy for Independent Living (RAIL) is a transition program for our students, ages 18-21. This program would move to the Friedell building as it is an expanding programming in need of more space.
There have been discussions on current students. Frequently asked questions are:
• Will our current 6th graders be allowed to stay through their 8th-grade year at Friedell, or will they go back to their neighborhood schools for their 8th-grade year?
• Will the District enroll new 6th graders in Fall 2021 if the building is closing to middle school students at the end of the 2021-2022 school year?
The District is working through both scenarios right now based on capacity options, and what is best for families. We will communicate more information with our families once data has been fully reviewed and a decision has been made.
More Information on the School Board Discussions:
The facilities task force recommended specific district program moves to increase capacity and balance diversity district-wide (such as socio-economic status and ethnicity) at the November 27, 2018 school board meeting. Friedell Middle School was included in this recommendation. Since that time, the repurpose and closure of Friedell has been discussed in five separate agendas. References to these agendas are below.