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Misinformation on the Closing of Bakerville

by on March 12, 2016

I would like to address the “facts” presented in bullet points in the mailer sent by the Coalition to Save Bakerville School.    While they call them “facts” most are at best conjecture.

First:  “Your property value will be affected.”  It could be better, it could be worse, but we are led to guess it will be worse.  There is no basis for that statement.

Second:  “Your child’s education will be affected.”  Other than the location where they get it, that statement is another insinuation that it will be worse, when in fact it could be much better.

Third:  “Bus routes and travel times will increase.”  That’s possible but since they just renewed the contract last week I don’t think we’ve seen any estimates, not even at the meetings last week.  They increase or decrease from year to year in the same locations now.   Our grandkids always lived within a 10 minute drive of their respective schools and their rides are close to an hour some years.  It’s what happens with bus routes.

There may be another bonus for working parents.  I don’t believe a bus runs from Bakerville to Giant Steps, which was always a problem for Bakerville parents who worked.

Fourth:  “Class sizes will increase.”  That is mostly false.  Average per class is estimated at the same level next year with Bakerville closed.   In one case, the 5 section 4th grade at Antolini will go back to 4 sections for 5th grade, but that has nothing to do with Bakerville closing.

Fifth:  “Savings for the BOE = costs to the Town.”  It’s not equal.  Classrooms and administrative positions cannot be combined when there are two schools doing the same things.  It isn’t possible to combine small classrooms in one school with huge classrooms in another if they’re not in the same building.  Savings for teachers, custodians, office staff, school nurses are not costs that are transferred to the town.

Sixth:  “New Hartford will lose a valuable asset.”  No, New Hartford will still own it.  If it needs to be reopened at a later time, we’ll do the upgrades and use it.  We’ll do what we need to do.  We always have.

Connecticut is losing residents.  Every town in Northwest CT is losing student population.  What is happening in New Hartford is not unusual.  Towns all over the area are finding their enrollments declining.

If the 2010 US Census Bureau predicted a 600 resident increase by 2020, our 2016 numbers point to a big failure, or if residents are trending in that direction, they’re not bringing kids with them.

I’m going to vote “YES” because I trust the judgment of the New Hartford Board of Education.  They’ve always made sure our children’s education was top notch.  None of that is changing.  No aliens came down and took over the minds of the members of the BOE.   They are still the same concerned adults trying to do their best with no compensation for their hours of work.  Your children will continue to get a top-notch education, no matter what building it happens in.


One Comment
  1. Anonymous permalink

    Well done!


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