Letter to the editor – Karen Lawton

To the editor,

I would like to share my support for the upcoming bond initiative for the Greene County School District. As a former board member, I am a huge supporter of consolidating our facilities into two locations and decreasing the amount of busing we are currently doing. We were told by school consultants several years ago that this was the most efficient way for a school district of our size and enrollment to operate, both financially and in terms of time management. I understand that circumstances take place and it sometimes takes longer for things to happen, but I am ready to finally arrive at where I think we have been headed for some time.

This is not the 1960s, and we need to stop saying that. This is also not a school board or administration trying to conspire to hide things. These are good people whose role is to take care of the needs of our children and that includes the management of the facilities.

Since when is building a new gymnasium not in the best interest of our students? Our three children learned some of life’s best lessons and character building skills in a gym. The same can be said of their participation in the fine arts.

Our superintendents have very graciously served in the office provided to them in what we used to call the South Grade School. I will defend the need for those offices to be moved. The space is too small, needs updated, and there is little to no privacy.

The closing of a school building is never an easy thing. I lived through it with the Cooper building and felt the sadness of my friends in the Scranton area when that building closed. Looking forward is always where our focus should be and this plan is one that addresses long term needs.

It is never easy nor fun as a board member to go before your community to ask for a levy increase. If you are going to do this, you need to make sure you are asking for sound, reasonable, sensible things. We used to have a sign in front of us at our meetings that said “Does my decision have a positive impact on students.” For me, the answer to this is yes.

Dr. Mark Peters provided good information concerning the current and future levy rates and considering where we have been in the past and where we are now, this seems fair.

Please join me in choosing to be positive for our children, our school, and our community by voting yes on September 8th.

Sincerely,

Karen Lawton, rural Jefferson

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