STILLWATER (AP) - The decision to permanently close three elementary schools in Stillwater has unleashed a torrent of disapproval from parents, some who left a tense meeting in tears.

The school board's decision Thursday night followed five hours of public testimony during a meeting at Stillwater Junior High. Superintendent Denise Pontrelli wants to shift the district's 8,300 students to new schools by next year to accommodate enrollment growth to the south.

Opponents say the district's demographic research is flawed.

Some parents and taxpayers have hired an attorney to explore possible legal action to stop the plan.