Pocono Family YMCA Considering Old Elementary School

STROUDSBURG, Pa. -- An old school building in the Poconos may reopen …as a school.

That's the word from the YMCA in Stroudsburg which is eyeing the old building for its early childhood programs.

Ramsey Elementary School on Thomas Street in Stroudsburg closed in 2015 and has been empty ever since, but the buzz around the borough is that Pocono Family YMCA has interest in the place.

Scott Peckins is the CEO of the Y on Main Street and says the organization is, in fact, looking into it for its Pre-K program.

"It came through the community that if we were ever interested in Ramsey, if we got a sweetheart deal or whatever we could do for the community, it would be great, so we've just heard that people would be interested in helping us out so that is what we are looking into," said Peckins.

The building is owned by the Stroudsburg School District.

Stroudsburg Mayor Tarah Probst says she's been trying to bring new life to the building since it closed. She says the Pocono Family YMCA would have to ask for a waiver to operate the building as a school.

"Then the zoning board if the ultimate decision. I really feel that the zoning board would love to see this in use as a school for the YMCA, and the thing is that it benefits our whole community," the mayor said.

YMCA officials say even though they have enough room right now, they do expect to grow over the next few years, and this building would be the perfect expansion location.

People who live in this area say it would be nice to see kids back out here playing.

Amanda Krantz lives near the school. She is also a member of the YMCA. She says you can see the need for more space and would like to see this happen for the organization.

"It's been empty since we moved in, shortly after we moved in, so it would be great to see kids back on the playground," Krantz said.

YMCA officials say this plan is still in the early stages and there is still a lot to figure out with funding being the biggest hurdle.

It's also unclear if the organization would buy or lease the building from the Stroudsburg School District.

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