Parents Speak Out Against Plan to Eliminate Neighborhood School in Concord

CONCORD, NC – A group of parents in Cabarrus County are fighting to save their neighborhood school. District leaders are considering a plan that would move kids from Concord to a larger school in Kannapolis.
“We love our neighborhood school,” explains parent Shannon Burpeau.
She has three kids at Beverly Hill STEM Elementary and likes that the school is small, older, and tucked away near downtown Concord.
“A true gem in today’s society where everything is newer and bigger and shiny and all of that stuff,” she explains.
Burpeau and dozens of other spoke out Monday night in front of the Cabarrus County School Board.
They want the board to reject possible plans that include shutting down Beverly Hills and moving kids to the new, larger Royal Oaks Elementary.
That school is still under construction and is in another city — about three and a half miles away in Kannapolis.
 “I know how important a community school is to just the thriving of that neighborhood,” says parent Joe Hartsell. 
Hartsell has a Kindergartner at Beverly Hills and he’s also a local real estate agent. He says he’s worried about property values if the school is shut down.
“It’s an area that has been revitalized recently. We want to keep that momentum going for this area and also the rest of downtown,” he says.
Along with those who spoke out Monday night, more than 3700 people have signed an online petition to try and save the school.
“It’s a generational school, and so a lot of times you have parents bringing their children there and they actually went to school there themselves,” Burpeau says.