There is high praise coming from all sides regarding the “win-win” agreement of expanding the Eliot K-8 Public School into the existing North Bennet Street School properties that would also allow NBSS to grow its trade and craft school in the North End. Through a cash and building swap valued at $11.4 million, NBSS, a private non-profit trade school, would relocate to the former city-owned police station and printing plant on North and Richmond Streets.
The Eliot School Family Council, a parents group, calls the outcome “truly amazing” in a statement:
Great News! Today the Eliot School Community learned that the City of Boston has acquired the North Bennet Street School buildings (as part of a widely-publicized proposed property swap) and will turn them over to the Boston Public Schools (BPS) to be used to expand the Eliot School. This announcement is truly amazing for the children of the Eliot and families who want to raise their children in the City of Boston.
Principal Traci Walker Griffith, Assistant Principal Lydia Torres and the incredible Eliot School faculty have built a school over the past few years that is a standard bearer for BPS and a place that gives our children a wonderful education. We look forward to working with the City and BPS now to literally build facilities around our administrators and faculty that are as fabulous as they are!
North Bennet Street School also issued a positive statement on its website, citing the opportunity to stay in the North End and consolidate its programs in one location.
The move to North Street will reunite our eight full-time programs under one roof, expand our continuing education program, provide meeting space for students and for the community and greatly enhance our ability to operate as a vibrant education and cultural organization in the city. The printing plant’s industrial space is uniquely suited to our educational needs and the adjacent police station will provide space for administrative offices and meeting rooms.
The opportunity to stay in Boston’s North End as we reunite our programs and expand our visibility in the city is one we hope you will join us in celebrating.
City of Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino is excited enough about the transaction that he wants to share it in person, next Tuesday on May 22, 2012, 6pm at the Eliot School. In a note to area parents, he writes: