To the editor:
So three Board of Education members, a high school principal and a high school teacher went on a week-long fact-finding junket to Ningbo, China.
How was this ever approved by the voters of D13? Or even approved by the BOE?
How could this have been seriously considered?
I looked at the 104-page school budget presented last spring. A PDF search of “China” found nothing.
There is a line item for travel expenses for employees. For this budget year, there was $32,374 budgeted, which is $841 less than the $33,215 budgeted in 2017-18. Maybe we should be grateful the D13 board is working hard to cut expenses
When the BOE gets back from China they owe the taxpayers an explanation as to how they justify this expense. There were many other ways this money could have been spent to benefit D13, including not spending it at all and letting the taxpayers keep it.
The issue with Korn school is a joke. As harsh as this sentiment is, that is the only way I can describe this elaborate reassignment of school buildings as taken upon the advice of a private firm under the auspices of saving taxpayer money.
You paid a company to research school utilization based upon the predictions of unknowns, including future number of students. Then you closed a school belonging to the whole district without any commitment to what would be done to the building.
Korn sat closed for two years and now Durham residents voted not to buy it because they don't want their taxes to go up.
Didn't you do all of this to lower costs for the school district/lower taxes in the first place?
Meanwhile, you've shuffled and downsized school staff, which has been the only effective cost savings.
John Lyman Elementary, also marked for closure, is so small there are two detached portable classrooms. Yet this ongoing building re-assignment is supposedly being done to accommodate the projected smaller number of enrolled students. So why close the small building?
I have a suggestion: dissolve Regional School District 13 and let Durham and Middlefield sustain their own small schools at a cost each town can maintain.
Any funds you forfeit from the state for not being regionally incorporated would be offset by eliminating such encumbrances as the maintenance of unused buildings, elimination of wasted space from some buildings and unnecessary administrative staff.
Durham can keep Brewster, Strong and CRHS.
Middlefield can turn its under-used community center next to the resident trooper, back into a school, keep Lyman and Memorial. This would perfectly accommodate declining enrollment, would not result in abandoned buildings or closures, and wouldn't have cost thousands of dollars to figure out.
I been checking the obit section of local papers for the last few days to see what is the cause of the sudden death of the Korn school building.
Maybe it was a stroke or a heart attack. I do not think it was cancer, or he did himself in. He looked very good the last few times I saw him. I know he was thinning on the top (roof), but a new rug and he would have been good. In fact, he was going for rehab in January 2019 to take care of some minor issues … new shoes (ramp), taking off some weight around the middle by taking in his belt.
He will be missed by all. He was only 56 years old, he still had more life to live. I expect he would had lived another 30 years. Some said he just ran out money and lost the will to live.
Another factor comes to mind; that he was murdered by an angry taxpayer. But it’s hard to believe that such an action would have taken place.
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