Letter to the Editor - 10/31/19

Dear HUUSD Community,

We want to update you on our board’s process this fall in reviewing change models for our school district and share with you what’s ahead. The board has been thinking carefully about how to best plan for the students currently in our schools, as well as how to provide innovative educational opportunities for our future students so that our district continues to thrive.

Currently, the options on the table include: 1) status quo (continuing to operate in our current configuration), 2) three variations of a scenario to close Fayston School and move all 7th/8th graders to Crossett Brook Middle School, one of which would also move Moretown 5th/6th graders to Crossett Brook. 

At our last meeting, we spent time considering a new scenario which would place all 7-12th graders at Harwood Union and change the grade configurations at Thatcher Brook and Crossett Brook. After lengthy conversation about the pros and cons of such a plan, the majority on the board felt that this was not a scenario worth pursuing further and voted against modeling it in detail. Our full discussion is accessible online thanks to Mad River TV. 

As we move towards our expected Nov 13 board vote on a PreK - 12 plan for the district, we have added an additional board meeting to our calendar on Tuesday, November 5 at 6pm in the Harwood Union Library. At that meeting, we expect to review the legal advice to date and determine our next steps in adopting a comprehensive, long-term plan.

We’ve been hearing questions about how board members are considering the impact any changes could have on our students and our communities. We have added that to our Nov 5 meeting agenda so that board members can reflect on the effects of school closure on students, as well as on the broader social and economic fabric of district towns, including possible loss or gain of students and families.

Once we have established our plan, we will dive into the work of budget season as well as defining our bond vote for Town Meeting Day 2020. There is still much work ahead and we are grateful for our community’s input and support along the way. More information about this work is available at huusd.org/prek-12-bond-plan.

We hope you will continue to email us with your thoughts, attend board meetings or watch them online, follow our progress and invest in the future of our schools.

With appreciation,

Caitlin Hollister, Chair

Harwood Unified Union School Board

 

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