Likelihood of saving Thacher continues to diminish

Thacher-exterior

Thacher damage. Thacher was built in 1900 and features a Second Renaissance Revival style. Arson damaged the 1914 addition two years ago, gutting the second floor and leaving the first floor severely compromised. Vandals have also contributed to the decline of Thacher. Due to the damage, KCPS staff have recommended demolition, which could occur as early as this summer. Thacher closed in 2009 as part of the district’s right-sizing initiative. The three-story building totals 34,100 square feet, has 18 classrooms and is located in the Indian Mound Neighborhood. Leslie Collins

By LESLIE COLLINS
Northeast News
May 15, 2013

Now that the Kansas City Public Schools’ Board of Education has approved reinstating middle schools, the possibility of saving the former Thacher Elementary School building is becoming less likely.

Board members approved reinstating middle schools during an April 24 meeting and plan to use Northeast Middle School and Central Middle School to house seventh through eighth grades beginning in 2014.

Three years ago, the district shuttered its middle schools as part of the right-sizing initiative to balance the budget and because KCPS wasn’t getting the results it wanted academically, said KCPS Public Relations Manager Andre Riley.

KCPS currently houses kindergarten through sixth grades in the same building, and for high school, grades seventh through 12th.

Parents began asking the district to reconsider opening middle schools and a Middle School Advisory Committee comprised of parents, community members and KCPS staff then made the recommendation to reinstate middle schools.

Thacher, which was shuttered during the right-sizing initiative, sits at 5008 Independence Ave. and shares an 8-acre plot with Northeast Middle School. Originally built in 1900, the three-story building features Second Renaissance Revival style architecture. Due to arson and vandalism, Thacher has suffered extensive damage and rehabilitation would be costly. To date, no one has offered to purchase the building.

District staff have recommended demolition of the site and the recommendation is awaiting  board of education approval.

“There’s real concern about Northeast Middle as a school and having a burned out vacant building on the same site,” said Shannon Jaax, KCPS Repurposing Initiative director. “What kind of environment does that leave for the children? It truly does become a safety issue.”

Before formal action is taken, KCPS plans to hold additional community meetings regarding Thacher. Jaax said KCPS is still open to re-use, but doubts a buyer will come forward.

If the building is demolished, the site could be used to enhance the Northeast Middle School campus and options would be discussed on how to best use the vacant lot, Jaax said.

“At this point we haven’t found any viable re-use (for Thacher) in the near term,” she said. “It’s a very difficult building to reuse in its current state with a shared site with a school.”

 

Comments are closed.

  • Northeast Newscast Episode 4 w/ Kansas City Museum Executive Director Anna Marie Tutera

    7 hours ago
    by

    By Paul Thompson Northeast News March 29, 2017 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – The Kansas City Museum will host an open […]


    Mayor focuses on positives at State of the City Address

    12 hours ago
    by

    By Paul Thompson Northeast News March 29, 2017 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – Mayor Sly James championed Kansas City’s commitment to […]


    Iconic Stevens House in Historic NE added to the National Register of Historic Places

    23 hours ago
    by

        By Paul Thompson Northeast News March 29, 2017 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – It was a long process, but […]


    Northeast house fire claims two lives

    March 28th, 2017
    by

    Northeast News March 28, 2017 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – A man and a woman were killed on Monday, March 28 […]


    KCMO Council unanimously approves 2017-2018 budget

    March 25th, 2017
    by

    By Paul Thompson Northeast News March 25, 2017 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – KCPD will have to manage this upcoming fiscal year […]


  • [Advertisement.]
  • Northeast Newscast Episode 3 w/ Missouri District 19 Representative Ingrid Burnett

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

    By Paul Thompson Northeast News March 23, 2017 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – Another episode of the Northeast Newscast is in […]


    Charges filed in fatal St. Patrick’s Day crash

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

    By Michael Bushnell Northeast News March 23, 2017 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – Charges have been filed in a crash that […]


    KCPD Chief Forté announces retirement

    March 22nd, 2017
    by

    By Paul Thompson Northeast News March 22, 2017 Editor’s note: This story was updated on March 23 KANSAS CITY, Missouri […]


    Retirement party for Dr. Joslyn

    March 22nd, 2017
    by

    Photos by David Remley March 22, 2017 Retirement. After more than two decades serving the Northeast community, Dr. Elaine Joslyn […]


    Why the KCMO animal shelter seeks new digs

    March 22nd, 2017
    by

    By Paul Thompson Northeast News March 22, 2017 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – On top of a former landfill, within a […]


  • Local Weather

  • What’s Happening

    Turn-of the century firefighters were hot at competition

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News March 29, 2017 In the late 1800s and early 1900s, the Kansas City Fire Department […]

    retorts illustrated bryan stalder

    Northeast News March 29, 2017

    Roses are red … and pink … and white …

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News March 22, 2017 Between Oct. 21 and 24 of 1864, the area we now know […]