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Vargas Calls For Closing Schools, Other Steps, To Keep District Sustainable

Rochester School Superintendent  Bolgen Vargas is out with a report he hopes will support the transition to a new district leader.

The document is called “Maintaining District Priorities,” and Vargas issued it as he gets ready to leave the superintendent’s role.

His office says that the report gives recommendations for specific actions that should be taken next year and longer term steps for advancing the city district’s priorities.

Among the recommendations, shifting resources to students and classrooms by doing things like reducing administrative costs in Central Office, and establishing an Office of Public Integrity to help stop wasteful and unethical practices.

Vargas also calls for helping the Rochester district maintain financial sustainability by closing one school building a year until the quality of schools improves to a level that stops the annual drop in enrollment.

When Vargas leaves this month, interim Supt. Dan Lowengard takes over. Vargas will remain on in an advisory role for the next six months.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.