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Country school needed

Dear editor:

We certainly live in changing times!

Of course, time has always brought change. With change, we are faced with new opportunities. What the present generation decides will set the course for the generations to come.

On behalf of the Alberton Central School, I’d like to express some views.

This particular school opened its doors in late 1961. At the time, three schools had combined to form the present Alberton School. One can imagine the people at the time had their share of discussion. Nonetheless, the outcome was a country school in a very unique country setting.

Today, we once again are faced with a decision. Alberton Central School has been under attack for some time, but now it seems the fatal blow has come.

Progressing with a renovated J.W. Walker School is obvious and might serve Fort Frances well. However, the people of Alberton are not at all agreed that sending their JK to Grade 6 kids to already congested, child-unfriendly surroundings of the Walker school is in best interest of their children.

The school board has voted unanimously to proceed with the Alberton School closure. If this intention is carried through, one thing is clear, that dollars have the final sway!

I am convinced something is drastically wrong when the financial faction alone dictates the board’s decisions. When this happens, parents who desperately want the best for their children feel violated.

Do board members really care for the well-being of the future generations, or is their mandate merely a matter of fiscal feasibility? And if that is the case, whatever happened to the over-blown price tag of the new Fort Frances High School? Whoever is responsible, the fact of the matter is that tax dollars were spent.

My point is this: because it is the school board’s responsibility to spend public money, we entreat to take one serious look at Alberton Central.

The growth potential is great for this township! As a rule, smaller schools are safe places because accountability is high. Also, communication between parents and teachers is better and easier to cultivate in smaller schools.

Sure, it’s a country school but then we find other countries are going back to smaller schools—why don’t we? Bigger is not necessarily better!

Alberton School should not only be allowed to exist, but be supported the way it deserves. Closing it will be a short-term solution!


Andrew Gerber

Member, Alberton

School Committee

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