JFK leaders dejected after meeting at Adelup - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

JFK leaders dejected after meeting at Adelup

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by Michele Catahay

Guam - John F. Kennedy High School stakeholders went to Adelup today seeking numerous answers for a variety of issues.  From an update on a permanent campus to the future of classes in Tiyan or elsewhere, stakeholders were left disappointed.

JFK sophomore Hilary Viray and several of her classmates attended a closed-door meeting with Governor Felix Camacho to get answers about what where they will attend classes come next school year.  She says they've had to deal with unforeseen circumstances, telling KUAM News, "I think we suffered enough because we show that we really want it. But from other peoples view they don't realize how much we're working for it."

While students and teachers gave a presentation on their efforts to get a new campus, the governor says although he sympathizes with the group, not much can be done to help with the building of a new campus. As KUAM News reported, the Guam Community Improvement Foundation has taken the issue to court, preventing a school from being built by International Bridge Corporation.

"Unfortunately, as I had explained to them," recalled Governor Felix Camacho, "it's now in the process of a legal protest. And we as a government simply have to stay the course with the court case to ensure we adhere to the procurement requirements that we're doing the best we can."

Camacho says the Government of Guam has done all it can to ensure JFK has a new home, but it's now a matter of waiting. As for whether JFK will remain at the interim campus in Tiyan, the governor says he sent a letter to Superintendent Dr. Nerissa Bretania Underwood last month advising Department of Education that the term with CoreTech International will be ending. He says it's up to DOE, the Guam Education Policy Board and the Guam Legislature to take an active role now by renegotiating with the landlord on the lease.

"Bottom line is take the lead role. It's yours. You're in charge of education. Run with it. I took the initiative and helped establish the interim school, hoping within that year period we could resolve things.  That didn't happen. It's now protested in court. So now take the lead if you want to stay in Tiyan or move back to GW," Camacho stated.

In the meantime, JFK teacher Angelo Andres says he's disappointed with the outcome of the meeting, saying it continues to be a waiting game for them.  He added, "I'm kind of frustrated...I really don't know now, I think I'm more confused now as far as where our direction is going to go in the next couple of years because it seems like the court system may hold up the process."

Andres says he hopes GCIF will drop the appeal at the best interest of the students.

For the time being, Dr. Bretania Underwood plans to meet with the board and the JFK exit task force at a later date.

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