West End School in Long Branch Likely to Close in 2014
Closing will coincide with opening of Catrambone School
The West End School in Long Branch will likely close in 2014, once construction of the new George L. Catrambone School is completed.
"It's the oldest and smallest school in the district and the utilities cannot match the newer schools' utilities in efficiency," Long Branch School District Superintendent Michael Salvatore said this week. "It's a great school but it doesn't meet today's standards."
Salvatore said some of those issues include the fact that the school, located at 132 West End Ave., has no ramps and has three floors and no elevator.
He said the school would be taken "offline" once the Catrambone School is open, which he hopes will be in the summer of 2014.
"Taking it offline means it's not going to be used for students and it could mean we will attempt to sell the property," Salvatore said. "The cost to renovate it would be entirely to expensive."
Closing the school, which serves kindergarten through fifth grade students, would mean redistricting for students. However, the Catrambone School will be a 109,000 square-foot, two-story facility designed to educate approximately 800 students in pre-kindergarten through fifth grades, so it would likely be able to handle students who were attending West End School.
The Catrambone School will be constructed on the site of the former Elberon Elementary School which was demolished in 2009. The facility will include 41 classrooms, four special education classrooms, a cafetorium, stage, computer room, gymnasium, media center/library, art room and a music room.
Salvatore said construction of the Catrambone School is "progressing nicely," and that the contractor is meeting deadlines.
"The contractor is very aggressive in terms of meeting the target completion date," Salvatore said.
Salvatore said there is a possibility that construction could be completed by July, 2014 and that summer camp could be held at the school.