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Will Valley View’s Pool Be Closed?

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ARCHBALD -- Some families in the Valley View School District worry the district will close its pool.

The water may be clear, but the future is cloudy for the Valley View School District's swimming pool.

The facility at the high school in Archbald has been around for four decades and administrators say the pool is showing its age.

“We are putting approximately 1,000 gallons of water in a day because there's a few leaks,” said acting superintendent Corey Castellani.

District officials say it costs about $200,000 to keep the pool open all year long, and that doesn't include money to do things like repair cracked drains.

Castellani said shutting the pool is one option that will be considered to close a shortfall of more than $400,000 in Valley View's proposed 2016-17 budget.

“We know the pool is very important to our students and our families, and it's definitely not a done deal. It's a conversation that we are going to have as an option,” Castellani added.

Families who love the pool are mobilizing to keep it open and created a petition online.

Nadine Gillen is the mother of three Valley View students.

“There are other sporting events that get a lot of money and I think shutting the pool should be the last thing on the list,” said Gillen.

Alice Uzialko’s niece is on a swim team that uses the pool and says the fourth grader would be heartbroken if it closes.

“She is doing really well and it is just too bad it may be taken away,” Uzialko said.

Supporters of the pool point to the benefits of swimming for kids such as health and safety.

“It’s important for them to swim. Who knows how many drownings they saved because of that pool up there?” said Randy Lucas, a Valley View graduate.

A school board meeting is scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m. Monday where parents are expected to raise the issue.

According to Castellani, the budget proposal currently on the table keeps the pool open. Castellani said some sort of compromise may be possible. One option would be keeping the pool open for part of the year.

The district has about a month to come up with a final budget.

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