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Friday, Mar 27, 2015

Brookridge will keep back gate open

Jeff Schmucker Hernando Today
Published:   |   Updated: May 7, 2013 at 06:30 PM

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Children who live in Brookridge will have access to a back gate of their community after all, thanks to help from the school district.

Superintendent Bryan Blavatt said his staff offered to donate one of the district's surplus electronic gates to the Brookridge community that will allow students to use their key cards to gain access before and after school.

The cost to the district will likely be a few hundred dollars, according to Blavatt, however he said it was worth it to provide safer access for students walking home from the nearby elementary, middle and high schools along the Ken Austin Parkway.

"We had proposed to them about trying to work out something where we can provide assistance," Blavatt said. "So I'm glad to see that they did and took us up on it."

Parents who live in the community spoke to various media outlets against the Brookridge board last month, claiming the group voted in secret to close the gate and based their decision on misinformation.

They added that the board had refused to listen to residents and, because of its decision; students would have to walk up to five or six miles on a dangerous road to get to the Brookridge entrance.

Initially, the Brookridge board intended to close the gate to students by Oct. 1, but later suspended the gate-closing date to Oct. 15 to review the matter. (352) 544-5271

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