To the Editor:
I must appeal to Newport voters to not take the money and run on school regionalization with Middletown.
On the surface, saving on building project costs and combining two small school systems seems to be wise. However, knowledge of the details makes it clear this particular regionalization is not a good deal for Newport’s kids.
The better term for this combination is “administrative regionalization,” which is a long way from real regionalization. Buildings, students, sports and classes would all remain separate. Regionalization advocates talk about more AP classes, for example. But how is that feasible with two separate high schools?
Importantly, Middletown has little respect for Newport’s system, and only wants regionalization now so they can save a ton of money on much-needed new schools. Middletown’s school committee has not taken a position on the plan – which to me says this is completely a financial decision.
Also, a joint school committee would define how the whole new arrangement would work. We were told at one public information session that we should just trust that this sure-to-be contentious committee will do what is best for Newport’s kids.
Newport does not need this mess of a proposal. Please vote no on regionalization.
John Greichen Jr. Newport