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Why aren’t we building one unified elementary school between the two towns?

There are several reasons that the District is not pursuing a single elementary school on the School Street/Southern Avenue corridor.

  • The Regional agreement between the two towns says that each town will retain an elementary school.
  • Several years ago, the District conducted a study to determine if the towns wanted a single elementary or two neighborhood schools. The results of that study were that the majority of residents in both towns (more than 600 responses) wanted to retain their neighborhood schools.
  • When convening the current school building committee, the committee revisited the one school option, but determined that the following factors precluded the District from pursuing that solution:
    • The MSBA does not reimburse for site acquisition costs. The cost of any purchase of land would be fully borne by the two towns.
    • The MSBA caps site development cost reimbursement at 8%, which, for a new site, would be a considerable expense.
    • All utilities would have to be brought to the newly acquired site, which MSBA will not reimburse.
    • All elementary school students would have to be transported to the new site—a costly increase to our annual expenses.