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Central Indiana county hopes to turn ‘beloved landmark’ into child care center

Ernie Pyle Elementary School is shown in an undated photo. (Provided Photo/Ernie Pyle Elementary School via Facebook)

CLINTON, Ind. (WISH) — A community survey is seeking input for a proposal to turn a former elementary school into a child care center.

South Vermillion Community School Corp. closed Ernie Pyle Elementary School at the end of the 2022-2023 school year. Pyle, a famous World War II journalist who was killed by sniper fire in 1945 in Okinawa, Japan, was a native of the nearby town of Dana.

The former school building is at 72 E. Vermillion County Road 1100 South, near the intersection with Rangeline Road. That’s about 2 miles northwest of Clinton, a city of about 4,800 residents, and about a 10-minute drive south of Dana, a town of 500.

Vermillion County Redevelopment Commission is conducting the survey. The government body wants to learn local child care needs and current child care offerings, and find out what programs and services would help the county of about 15,400 people.

A news release issued Wednesday from the redevelopment commission said, “While tactics are ever-changing moving forward, the initially outlined goals set a foundation for the Redevelopment Commission to actively listen to the community, revitalize a beloved landmark and ultimately drive access to child care for all residents.”

Vermillion County, which sits on the Indiana-Illinois border, is about a 100-minute drive west of Indianapolis.