Letter to the editor: Give public say on school’s fate

I’m writing in regard to the recent Addison Central School District Board conversations around a potential revision to Article 14 of the ACSD Articles of Agreement, “Provision for Closure of a School.” 

Personally, I believe towns should have a say as part of any process to close a school within its borders. Asking the entire district to vote on the fate of a single town’s elementary school feels like it will pit towns against one another.

I believe in honoring town independence because I value a single educational community that develops ways to celebrate the differences between each of our seven towns. The International Baccalaureate’s own mission statement centers this tension of creating freedom and unity: “Other people, with their differences, can also be right.” 

Even as I believe in the importance of a town’s voice in the matter of closing a school, I believe more that the electorate should decide how to best amend Article 14. Does our electorate believe that a school should be closed with an affirmative vote of the voters residing in the town(s) in which the school is located? Or does our electorate believe that a school should be closed with an affirmative vote of the voters of the entire Addison Central School District?

It’s time to take the burden of fixing the ACSD Articles of Agreement off of the shoulders of our volunteer school board and ask the electorate. Asking the electorate is a choice the ACSD Board can make.

Tim O’Leary


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