The Elephant in the Room – Laura Colebank
The elephant in the room is the new Morgan school, which the town voted for. It’s a cost we committed to and cannot be changed. The debt service increase for the school is approx 50 percent of the education budget increase. Yes, we hoped the old Morgan would be redeveloped to offset the cost. Unfortunately that’s not the case, yet.
This new school is an asset, has energized our town, and has the potential to attract new families if we don’t keep cutting education! The Board of Education has worked tirelessly to rightsize for declining enrollment and cut costs to the bone. Even if you don’t have children in the school system, according to Realtor.com, it’s a proven fact that supporting education helps your home values.
If education continues to be slashed, Clinton will continue the downward spiral. Families will not move to Clinton, existing ones will leave (there is buzz about this), more families will choose private school (supporting education in other towns), property values will continue to decline, we won’t attract businesses, and mill rates will continue to rise. Clinton will become a ghost town. That is not the thriving, vibrant community my family chose to live in.
The solution is economic development, not slashing education and vital town services.
I encourage everyone who voted “Yes” for the new Morgan, all parents, and everyone who values education and our beautiful town to vote “Yes” June 6.
Laura Colebank is vice president of the PTA.
Published May 30, 2018 – https://www.zip06.com/letters/20180530/the-elephant-the-elephant-