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School District Dilemma: Where Will These Students Go?

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CHICOPEE, Mass. (WGGB)- Just days before class begins, some Chicopee students were told they can’t return to school.  It’s a message parents on Kirby Street received Thursday. But the issue has been cleared up — for now.

5 year old, Noah Kielbiana, looks forward to his first day of kindergarten.

“Because I’m going to have new friends,” he says.

But until Friday afternoon, he didn’t have a desk waiting for him in a Chicopee classroom.

And a few of his neighbors on Kirby Street didn’t either, including a young girl across the street who’s been a student in the Chicopee Elementary School for the past four years.

“There’s not enough room in the school because there’s a bunch of kids that are going to school that don’t live in the city or that aren’t citizens of the city,” says Kirby Street resident, Tom Keilbiana.

The call came Thursday that their school district will now be Springfield.

The problem is that some home property street sits on the Chicopee/Springfield city line, now with not much time to spare; they’re getting the run around.

“She tried to register her child into a Springfield school and they told her she lived in Chicopee, so she went to Chicopee and they said you live in Springfield,” Keilbiana explains.

Friday afternoon the Superintendent’s Office released a statement:

“The Superintendent’s office has decided that all students affected on Kirby and Wolfe Streets will be allowed to attend Chicopee public schools for the 2014-2015 school year.

They will revisit the qualifications for students in that area to attend Chicopee schools for next year at the end of the school year.”

Tom Kielbiana isn’t satisfied with the response. Since he’s fully invested in the community, he says Chicopee is the only option for his son now and in the future.

“If you ask where my 5 years old son lives, he will say Chicopee Massachusetts. I vote down the street in Chicopee Massachusetts,” he continues.

If the dispute continues, Kielbiana will consider homeschool

Chicopee students return to school on Tuesday.


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