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Students, parents mark final days of Eagle Lake school

Eagle Lake Elementary School students Quinn St. Peter, left, and Ryley Plourde enjoy a cool drink Thursday, June 8, during a school fun day organized by the local PTA. (Contributed photo)

EAGLE LAKE, Maine — Students at Eagle Lake Elementary School spent some of their final days at the school playing outside and creating a few more memories, thanks to some “fun days,” organized in collaboration with members of the local Parent Teacher Association.

In August of last year, MSAD 27 school board members voted to close the elementary school, based on declining student enrollments. The town then initiated the process to withdraw from the school district, in hopes of being able to reopen the school themselves in the near future.

That process is still underway, although a final decision will only be made after the coming school year. A public hearing on the withdrawal is scheduled for June 19.

Thursday, June 8, was the was the final day for Pre-K students, while Monday, June 12, was the last day of school for all students at ELES.

More than 20 ELES students from all grades took part in a School Fun Day, June 8. Teachers, volunteers and students took off a couple of hours to enjoy the summer weather and have fun.

Eagle Lake Elementary School students Olga Stanley, left, and Noah Plourde enjoy some cooling spray from a garden hose Thursday, June 8, during a school fun day organized by the local PTA.
(Contributed photo)

“We wanted to have a chance to celebrate at the school one last time,” sad Eagle Lake PTA president Morgan Wilson.

Students took part in outdoor games like Twister on the grass, scooter races, balloon tennis, Frisbee tic-tac-toe and ring toss. Due to the high temperatures, organizers also got a garden hose and offered the children a chance to play in a light and cooling spray.

On Saturday, June 10, PTA members organized a second fun day at the school, this time aimed at students and their families. Along with games and activities, the Family Fun Day included a bouncy house, a visit from Smokey the Bear and the Brain Freeze ice cream truck.

More than 140 children and family members took part Saturday, according to Wilson. The day ended with two students-vs.-parents basketball games in the school gymnasium.

Wilson, who has been with the local PTA for seven years, has one child in second grade and another entering Pre-K in the fall. Closing the school and going through the withdrawal process has been stressful for students and residents, Wilson said.

“It’s been a roller coaster,” said Wilson “It feels like the heart is getting taken out of the town. It’s been hard on everyone.”

Wilson said the school is the hub of many community activities and programs. She said even if the building is used in the future for some community programs, it would not be the same if the school were not there.

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