The decision to close Randolph, Village Elementary School in Landover will be reconsidered as a result of an agreement reached yesterday between lawyers for the Prince George's County school board and a group of parents who want to keep the school open.
The school board's decision last April to close the predominantly black school was protested by several black leaders in the county. They charged that the school baord member who proposed the closing, A. James Galato, had done so only to stop the busing of a predominantly white group of children to the school from the Kettering area.
A group of parents of Randolph Village students appealed to the Maryland Board of Education, urging that the state agency prevent the county board from closing the school. These parents charged that the county school board ignored its own school-closing guidelines in shutting down the school.
Yesterday's agreement to reconsider the closing came during a hearing on the parents' appeal. Three county board members at the hearing, as well as a rpresentative of the parents' group, approved the agreement.
However, it still must win approval from two more county board members at an Aug. 9 meeting in order to take effect.
The tentative agreement, worked out by school board attorney Paul M. Nussbaum and Alex Williams, attorney for the parents appealing the closing, also stipulates that a community task force make a recommendation on whether to close the school within six weeks of its appointment by the board.
In addition, the agreement says that if the board, after considering the task force report, decides not to reopen Randolph Village, the school will remain closed and the parents will not attempt to appeal the decision.
School board member Bonnie F. Johns, who opposed the closing of Randolph Village and testified on behalf of the parents' appeal yesterday, said she thought the agreement "shows a willingness to deal with a mistake up front."
Johns has maintained since the board's vote on Randolph Village that a community task force should have been called in before a decision was made to close the school, as was done in nine other school-closing cases this year.