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Fate of old elementary school prompts public outcry in the Poconos

The Pocono Elementary Center in Tannersville has been closed since 2013 due to low enrollment.

TANNERSVILLE, Pa. — Residents, School Board members, and Pocono Township officials expressed emotion in the auditorium at the Pocono Mountain School District to discuss the future of Pocono Elementary Center.

The district-owned property in Tannersville has been closed since 2013 due to low enrollment.

According to the School District, the building has been used as a training facility for surrounding area schools, but several weeks ago, CORE 5 Industrial Partners, which owns property next to the elementary center, offered to buy the building for more than $8 million.

Jackson Township resident Jesse Rambo was one of the dozens of members who waited to address the school board.  

"You're talking somewhere between 250 and maybe a thousand 18-wheelers a day. On 611, 715 warner road, and Stadden road. What's it gonna do to your school buses," Rambo said.

Recently, Pocono Township became interested in buying the former school. 

President Richard Wielebinski of the Pocono Township Board of Commissioners said they would like to repurpose the building to meet growing community requirements.

"The present complex we have is really 30-40 years old. The police department was built at one time for eight officers; we now have 21," Wielebinski said.

Dave Marraw, a lifelong resident of the school district says having the township take over the building is a better option than another warehouse.

I don't think money is what makes our community and school district great. It's guys like you in this position making right decisions," he said.

The Wednesday evening meeting did hear several options for the future of the Pocono Elementary Center, but no decision was made.

A vote on the future of the elementary school will be set at a later date.


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