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Continued: St. Paul's West Side welcomes new school, but it's just the start

  • Article by: ANTHONY LONETREE , Star Tribune
  • Last update: September 1, 2013 - 9:10 PM

She did research, taking note of low test scores in the area, and learned more about what she calls a “jagged pipeline,” that is, the movement of Spanish-English immersion kids from Riverview out of the neighborhood. The group now is pushing for an immersion program at Humboldt, and more extracurricular activities there, too.

But, Noecker added, “we really don’t want to be that group of parents who are always cantankerous and always making trouble.” And so, the group is surveying residents to get their perceptions of schools — it’s gotten 53 responses and wants 200 — and plans to invite local principals and then the superintendent to its upcoming monthly meetings.

Jackie Turner, the district’s chief engagement officer, said this week that current demand for a secondary-level dual-language immersion program is not enough to fill the Highland program, but that if a capacity issue were to arise, “the West Side of the city would be a great place to consider.”

At Riverview Thursday, Mylinh Dao, a West Side resident, said she favored the new community-school emphasis, and had never considered sending her daughter, Lily Dao, 8, anywhere but Riverview when she was a kindergartner. Both liked the look of the new school, with Lily taking special note of Noecker’s classroom, where the paintbrushes stood neatly in jars, ready to go.

“Art class is going to be my favorite,” she said. “I love art.”

Anthony Lonetree • 651-925-5036

  • related content

  • At the new Riverview elementary school, Principal Melisa Rivera got a big hug from St. Paul schools Superintendent Valeria Silva, right. The school is the focus of a new push for neighborhood schools in the city. The hope is that students will stay on the city’s West Side instead of going elsewhere.

  • Riverview elementary school became a reality after a former school on the site, which closed in 2010, underwent a $3 million renovation. Principal Melisa Rivera greeted students and their families at a recent open house at the school.

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