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      District shuffles elementary schools

      Three elementary schools in Ottumwa will be history once a new school is built.

      The Agassiz, Pickwick and Wildwood elementary schools will combine to create a new school for 2nd-5th graders. Another school, Douma, will now be just for kindergartners and first graders.

      Viewers will remember a push to save Pickwick elementary last year by parents in the community. Now that there is a plan in place, superintendent Davis Eidahl says the concerns shouldn TMt be there.

      Having a plan to where those parents know where their children will be attending school, eventually all those students in a brand new school, I think that has comforted [the parents] a bit, Eidahl said.

      If all goes according to the district TMs plan, groundbreaking on the new school will begin sometime next spring with the building ready for the beginning of the 2013 school year. The school board has approved a draft of how the school will look; however, the district still wants input from community members.

      As far as the final blue print of this building, we're still looking to really go out and get a lot of input from our teachers and our parents in [our communities] so that we have a good elementary design.

      The building is estimated to cost a little less than $15 million.