Morehouse Parish School Board votes against closing two schools

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MOREHOUSE PARISH, La. (KNOE) The Morehouse Parish School board votes no to close two schools.

The targeted schools included Henry V. Adams and Pine Grove Elementary.

Families and friends erupted in cheer and applause the moment the decision was handed down.

"I think that it's a blessing and I think most of all, it's about the kids, and I think that's the best decision that ever could've been made," said Tamika Jones, a parent.

The decision also means nearly 50 employees will retain their jobs.

This all comes after a month of uncertainty over the school system's financial status since it faces a $1.5 million deficit.

Before Monday night's decision, parents feared what the looming decision would've done if the board voted yes.

"My main worry was so many kids commuting back and forth early times kids having to get up, adapt to a new environment it wasn't good," said Jones.

"Overcrowding other classes, and these babies would have to get up a little earlier than normal and thank God that it didn't happen tonight," said Latoya Givens, a parent.

But Superintendent David Gray says it's only a matter of time before they deplete their balance.

"By the end of February, we'll be running into a negative balance, in other words, checks will not clear the bank," said Gray.

Gray says all they can do now is move forward.

"It'll be our job then to go through and figure out how long we can keep schools open under the current configuration, plus possibly whatever as far as recommending a plan for the future."

Monday night's decision was also the deadline on the two schools' futures.

Meanwhile, a federal lawsuit was also filed by a local citizen and plans to go forward with it, despite the schools staying open.