I struggled with the question of the New Paltz Middle School renovation for some time because it's a complicated project that will affect both my child's education and my family's tax bill. But after attending many meetings and talking to anyone who would listen, I've come to the conclusion that it's in the best interest of our kids and our community to do this renovation now. There's been a lot of talk about the "band aid" repairs that have been done to this school over the years, the most recent example being $50,000 to repair the roof in the gym.
Nobody got hurt -- this time. The longer we delay the more expensive these patch jobs will become as the building degrades. And how much more expensive will it be if we have to pay for the medical care of someone who is hurt?
A lot of people are scared about how much this will cost New Paltz if we don't get the state aid that's been promised. If that happens, the project won't move forward -- period. We won't be forced to come up with the extra money.
The Board of Education has done a great job putting together this plan. The layout of the school is genius and will really provide the students with a feeling of unity amongst their classmates. Finding the school in Tillson for the relocation plan -- and persuading the state to let us use it -- is a real feather in the board's cap. It answers one of the most important questions about how to implement this renovation project.
Our kids and teachers deserve a safe place for learning and we can't afford to wait.