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      263 staff layoffs; Flint alternative school could close under new plan

      The Flint school board is mulling a new consolidation plan that would shut down Flint Northern Academy for good and lay off 263 staff members.

      In the Dyson family, the Viking way is the only way.

      ??Oh, it was awesome,?? says Meoachy Dyson who graduated from Flint Northern in 1999. Now, her daughter attends the alternative academy.

      The ninth through 12th grade high school was transformed into an alternative school this time last year.

      Now, the school board may close the building for good.

      ??It was easier for her to come and be able to make it out on time,?? says Dyson.

      ??A lot of people said that Northern was kind of bad but i guess they really wouldn't understand unless you actually go there,?? says Nashaya Pea.

      Flint students might not have the same opportunity Nashaya had under a new consolidation plan.

      ??It was a sad moment for me,?? says Pea, reflecting on when she learned the school may close

      In addition to closing Northern, the plan lays off 263 district staff members and sends all 7th graders to one building.

      School board member David Davenport is not happy with the plan.

      ??Bottom line is, I know we have money problems but we need to think about the education of the kids first."

      The Flint school district is facing a $10 million deficit.

      ??Hopefully, whatever move they make now, it won't happen again next year,?? adds Davenport.

      ??There??s not too many options any more,?? says Dyson.