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Southwest High School gains a temporary tenant: St. Peter’s School

Kansas City’s Southwest High School, closed in 2016, will serve as a temporary home for St. Peter’s School as the Catholic school is renovated this summer and fall.
Kansas City’s Southwest High School, closed in 2016, will serve as a temporary home for St. Peter’s School as the Catholic school is renovated this summer and fall. kmyers@kcstar.com

At least for a while, Kansas City Public Schools’ closed Southwest High School will have students again — from neighboring St. Peter’s School.

The Catholic school at 6400 Charlotte St. has struck a deal with the Kansas City district to use the venerable high school at 6512 Wornall Road while St. Peter’s undergoes renovations this summer and fall.

St. Peter’s will pay $10,000 a month from July through December, the district announced Tuesday.

The high school has been empty since the district closed its Southwest Early College Campus program at the end of the 2015-2016 school year.

The school has been the subject of intense speculation in recent years as plans for its reuse have risen and fallen.

The school district is not listing Southwest as one of its buildings up for sale, but is instead holding it in reserve, possibly to be used eventually as a middle school.

In 2014, the school district and Academie Lafayette charter school announced a joint plan to share in an international-themed high school that would be operated by the charter school.

But those plans came undone by the spring of 2015 amid conflicts among community groups in how the school should be used.

A community effort called Uniting at Southwest now is attempting to develop a plan and support to reopen Southwest as a high school.

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