Committee begins deciding on new elementary school name

Wednesday, October 23, 2013 | 2:40 p.m. CDT; updated 11:03 a.m. CDT, Thursday, October 31, 2013

COLUMBIA — A naming committee for a new public elementary school in Columbia received more than 30 suggestions by the Oct. 14 deadline.

Assistant Superintendent Peter Stiepleman, who is leading the committee of community members and school district personnel, said the submissions will be confidential until the committee meets again in early November.

The committee created a way to award points to each submission and chose the top four candidates based on the point system.

The four names will be vetted and then returned to the committee for the next step, spokeswoman Michelle Baumstark said.

The elementary school, which will be north of Muriel Williams Battle High School, is set to open for fall 2015.

The Columbia Missourian's Facebook page received the suggestion that the school near Battle be named for Almeta Crayton, who represented the First Ward on the City Council for three terms and was well known for her care of others.

Baumstark confirmed that public schools in Columbia are named for people only after they have died and that the public opportunity to suggest a name for the school near Battle passed before Crayton died on Monday.

However, she said other naming opportunities will come along soon. Another elementary school is planned for a location yet to be decided in southern Columbia and creation of a "community school," which would serve struggling students from kindergarten through fifth grade, is being considered.

Supervising editor is Elizabeth Brixey.

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Skip Yates October 24, 2013 | 7:16 p.m.

Almeta Crayton had nothing to do with the school system. Though her collecting food and feeding a small portion of folks in her ward is admirable; it doesn't rise to the level of naming a school after her.

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