SHIP BOTTOM, NJ - The Long Beach Consolidated School District Board of Education spent a lot of time deciding to close the LBI Grade School in Ship Bottom.  It was not an easy decision.  The District will occupy the Ethel Jacobsen School as the only campus for the LBI elementary school students with the exception of Beach Haven students. Beach Haven Borough has their own separate school district.  

Since that decision was made the next intent was to sell the LBI Grade School on 20th Street in Ship Bottom.  After the property went up for sale, Ship Bottom Borough officials made an offer to purchase the school property and keep that as a recreational area in the borough.   The Board would not approve that sale until it heard from area voters. 

The Board of Education placed a referendum to the voters in the  Surf City Borough, Ship Bottom Borough, Barnegat Light, Harvey Cedars and Long Beach Township to approve this offer from Ship Bottom Borough to purchase the school and property for recreation use.  The Board of Education would not accept that offer unless all voting districts approved the sale.  

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The sale was not approved by all of the voting districts at a recent question for the voters at the polls.  Since all did districts did not approve of the sale to Ship Bottom, the Board will most likely now sell the property to the highest bidder.

There is the potential to sell 35-55 buildable lots on that property to the highest bidder.  The Board of Education would use that money to refurnish and renovate the Ethel E. Jacobsen School at 200 Barnegat Avenue in Surf City.  This will be the only school in the elementary school district.  

If interested in this issue, you are welcome to attend the next LBI Board of Education meeting on Feb. 21. The board meets at 7 p.m. in the media center of the E.J. School, at 200 South Barnegat Ave. in Surf City.