DISD Is Pulling Its Zoning Request For Joe May, But Flores Still Hopes School Opens In 2013

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3700 Ross remains closed for another week, but I did just talk to Dallas Independent School District trustee Edwin Flores about something I mentioned last week: DISD's decision to yank from the City Plan Commission's docket a zoning request for the proposed Jose "Joe" May Elementary School on Webb Chapel between Royal and Walnut Hill. The school, part of the 2008 voter-approved bond package, is supposed to go in Flores's district -- if, that is, it ever gets built.

Flores insists it will: "Oh, heck, yeah," he said when asked if it's still in the plans. "We have 1,000 kids in portables, and that's just not right."

Joe May's capacity would be 810 students, all of whom would come from David G. Burnet, Tom Field and Julian T. Saldivar in Adam Medrano's neighboring district. Says Flores, all three elementary schools are "at 135-percent-plus capacity," a stark contrast from the 11 campuses the district's considering consolidating and closing. If May gets built, it would jam-pack a lot of elementary schools into that part of Northwest Dallas, where Cigarroa, a 2002 bond package school built at the corner of Walnut Hill and Webb Chapel, is also full.

Says Flores, he hasn't spoken with residents around the proposed campus who've been meeting with council member Ann Margolin; he says he's yet to be invited to neighborhood town halls. "It's hard for me to know what we can do if they never reach out," he says. "We've been excluded from the process." He also says officials with the city and the district have been meeting to find a resolution, and that he still hopes to get Joe May open in time for the 2013-14 school year.

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Edwin Flores
"The voters approved the construction of the school when they approved the bond," he says. "We didn't know where it would be built, but you need for an elementary a minimum of eight acres that are contiguous, and there's no place in North Dallas where we can find the property that's remotely close to where people live and send their kids to school. The city staff has been great, very supportive. It's not an issue with the city, fortunately. ...

"But the frustration here is: If I came to the city of Dallas as a developer and said, 'I have $45 million and construction plans that are ready to go right now, and just think of all the jobs we'll create and all the materials we'll buy,' what city would not bend over backward to get $45 million in business? And the mayor's been supportive. Staff has talked to him, and he's trying to find a way to get this resolved. He's been great, and hopefully cooler heads will prevail."

I asked if he believe 2013 is still a realistic opening date. His response: "One can only hope and pray that folks get together and get their heads around this."

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9 comments
Randy S
Randy S

As others have mentioned, it's all about the construction $$$. Who do you think ponies up the money to run the expensive pro-bond campaigns that Carol Reed and her south Dallas partners put together? Construction companies, architecture firms, materials suppliers, etc. The building of schools isn't for our kids, it's for Dallas' businesspeople - and usually the ones with "connections".

Jessica
Jessica

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Oak Cliff Townie
Oak Cliff Townie

So uneducated me or I as the case my be wants to know, what caused the Population shift To the north ?Are the soon to be shuttered schools in areas where entire apartment communities had a torch set to them ?( Okay so it was a Bulldozer)

Cliffhanger
Cliffhanger

 So basically, Flores is upset that real, live actual citizens want input into the process.

What a great public servant.

Jessica
Jessica

I am a 26 years old girl, down to earth and cute but still single ... I  wanna find my lover who  can give me a real love,so I joined in the seekcasual.COM,it's the best club for  man and woman finding their intimate encounters. Well, you do not have to be lonely , you  can meet the Mr. or Miss. Right there.

StopDISD.org
StopDISD.org

With all the school closings more questions arise like Eduardo Mata one of the schools listed for closing due to it being under student capacity...this is a fairly new school it's only 14 years old (how many millions were spent to construct it?).  Why would the district close it?  Mount Auburn another elementary school is also on the list and so is O.M. Roberts the school that was recently renovated with millions of our tax dollars then demolished in August.   DISD proposes to close these schools and even thought the only thing left at the Roberts site is dust DISD moves forward with building a brand new 22 million dollar O.M. Roberts...so, is the district closing the 14 year old Eduardo Mata and Mt. Auburn to bus children over to the new Roberts school?  It just doesn't make sense.  Please note both Mata and Mt. Auburn are less than 2 miles away from the O.M. Roberts site.   The district should save tax dollars and utilize Eduardo Mata and Mt. Auburn instead of closing them and why are they spending millions to build a new O.M. Roberts when it's under the student capacity and on the proposed closing list? The district should focus on better education for our students better compensation for our teachers and preservation of schools not on wasting our tax dollars on constructing unnecessary new schools.

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

Short-term construction jobs to build unneeded schools that have the added benefit of infuriating tax-paying homeowners who haven't yet bailed on the city.

Campaign contributions (comprised of tax dollars) to the school board members who push the deal through.

Even the mayor throwing taxpayers to the wolves.  What a guy.

And people wonder why downtown is dead, why the suburbs are booming, and why sprawl/pollution/blight surrounds us.

Willie
Willie

Your terrible grammar and punctuation indicates that you could use some schooling. 

StopDISD.org
StopDISD.org

Willie, thanks for pointing that out.  Please accept my apologies for any inconvenience this may have caused.   

You can thank DISD for my poor grammar and punctuation. 

My teachers were laid off so, DISD could renovate, demolish and construct new schools. 

Your tax dollars were spent on land development and everything else.

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