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Parents: Metzgar Elementary schools should exclude voters, teens

| Thursday, Nov. 28, 2013, 6:33 p.m.

Salem Township has other possible sites to use as a polling place, rather than Metzgar Elementary School, a Salem woman reported to the Greensburg Salem school board.

Parent Jen King has expressed concerns to directors about adults being in the school to vote while children are attending classes. She is searching for a replacement, with the approval of the school board.

“There are lots of places in the area,” King told directors earlier this month. “We have to contact them and get their permission.”

The mother of three students at the school named three potential contenders.

School officials cautioned her to make certain a new voting site is accessible for those with walking limitations.

Metzgar is the only building in the school district used as a polling place, although some residents would like that to change, according to King.

“I feel the people who have been pushing for this for 20 years will be very, very excited with this,” King added.

In another matter, parent Mark Heverly told directors he disliked an arrangement that sent high school students to nearby Nicely Elementary School on McLaughlin Drive during a bomb threat at the senior high Nov. 12.

“I don't feel high school children should be mixed with elementary children,” he said.

School officials needed to move students quickly because of the limited time between the bomb message's threatened time and the message's discovery, Superintendent Eileen Amato replied.

School officials needed to consider other factors, such as leaving students outside while the building was searched.

“It was 36 degrees outside,” Amato said.

The students did not mix, and teachers accompanied the high school students to the elementary school, Amato added.

“We don't like to go into the elementary (building), but the kids are totally kept separate,” Amato said.

Some high school students walked to nearby Greensburg Volunteer Fire Co. Hose No. 1 during the evacuation.

Bob Stiles is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-6622 or bstiles@tribweb.com.

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