DuBOIS — Concerned about a proposal to move fifth-graders to the middle school, parents peacefully protested on the sidewalk in front of the Administrative Center on Liberty Boulevard Thursday evening, an hour before the DuBois Area School Board meeting, where a vote on the issue took place.

Still, the board voted, 7-2, in favor of the reconfiguration of the DuBois Area Middle School from grades 6-8 to grades 5-8, effective with the 2018-19 school year and to notify the Pennsylvania Department of Education of this decision. Directors David Schwab and Sam Armagost voted no. Lee Mitchell, Ben Haugh, Patty Fish, Larry Salone, Jeff Madinger, Randy Curley and Mark Gilga voted in favor.

The concerned parents who participated called it “a show of resistance.”

Those participating brought signs that said, “Vote No,” or “Let Kids Be Kids,” “5th=Elementary” or something similar.

They weren’t allowed to hold signs on district property but they were permitted on the sidewalks.

In a 6-3 vote, the board also voted to approve KCBA Architects to design and document a new elementary school at Wasson Elementary as per their Jan. 22 proposal letter and pending solicitor approval of the architectural contract. Voting against were Armagost, Schwab and Haugh.

Another proposal from the EADS Group to perform the civil engineering/land development services for a new elementary school at Wasson Elementary was approved in a 5-4 vote. Voting against were Armagost, Schwab, Haugh and Salone.

In a 9-0 vote, the board also authorized the board business manager to commit $5,996,000 of the unassigned general fund balance for future repairs and maintenance of district buildings.

After the votes, many of the concerned parents left the meeting.

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