On September 24, 2014

Community meetings will explore elementary school options

First forum held Sept. 30 in Bridgewater

WOODSTOCK—More than a year ago, members of the school boards in Bridgewater, Pomfret and Woodstock formed a joint committee to study existing models of providing elementary education in each town and to seek out potential alternatives. The joint committee now invites parents, taxpayers and citizens from these towns to one of the community forums slated for the end of September and early October to hear about and provide input on the committee’s ideas.

“Several scenarios were developed and considered,” said Vermont School Board Association consultant John Everitt, who has worked with the committee for the past year. “Out of this process the committee is recommending to form a joint contract between the towns, which will then pursue future options.”

Everitt said that the downward enrollment trend in these towns puts pressure on the resources for the schools and directly affects the scope of educational opportunities for students, such as music, art and physical education, or special items such as computer labs, a full-time principal or even a school nurse for more than one morning a week.

Everitt said the joint committee sees great opportunity in its ideas, which most importantly will enhance the students’ educational experiences. The committee will discuss its ideas in more detail, answer questions and begin an open conversation about what the future holds for education in these three towns.

Anyone from any of the towns is welcome to attend the forums. Members of each town’s school board will be present at each meeting. All meetings will be held at 7 p.m.

Dates are: Sept. 30 at Bridgewater Village School; Oct. 6 at Woodstock Elementary School; and Oct. 7 at The Pomfret School.

The committee is working on informational documents and a website that will house these documents for public viewing. They hope the website will go live in early October.

For more information, contact Everitt at john.everitt.vt@gmail.com.

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