The letter I wrote to the editor of the Gazette was published yesterday so I have re-posted it below.
There have been many articles and letters written over the past few weeks regarding the proposed override. Many of these have focused on the numbers. While I do not deny that the numbers are important (especially in this difficult economic time), I feel it necessary to remember another very important piece of this discussion: the children. There are many people with varied opinions regarding this override. Whether one is for or against it, I find it difficult to believe that there is anyone who would want the education of our children to suffer the consequences of this override failing.
Currently, I serve as the President of the Middleborough Elementary PTA. I have also served within the PTA as the Cultural Enrichment Chair, the Fundraising Chair, and Co-Chair of the Mardi Gras Carnival. I am a member of the Memorial Early Childhood Center School Council and a member of the Nichols Middle School PTSA. I am also an active school volunteer at the elementary and middle school level. On the state level, I serve as a member of the Massachusetts PTA Advocacy Team. My children are involved in numerous town and school activities including dance, Girl Scouts, Student Council, basketball, and the Middle School PTSA. As involved members of this community, it is important to my family that the schools maintain the highest level of education possible. One of the first things incoming businesses and families look at when deciding where to locate is the reputation of the schools. With upwards of 40 children in some classrooms, it is hard to imagine anyone would find that desirable.
As adults, we have a voice and a right to vote. It is important to note that while this money is not guaranteed beyond the first year, our vote at town meeting is what determines how the money from an override is allocated. This campaign does not end with the passage of an override. As a town, as a community and as civic minded members of this great country, it is our responsibility to continue to ensure that our children are provided with the best education and as many opportunities as possible, well after the override has passed or failed. One day, my children, and the children of this community will be adults, facing difficult decisions and choices themselves. Let us make sure that they face these decisions regarding our future with an education and experience they can be proud of and utilize in whatever decisions and choices they will make. We must keep in mind that the education provided in Middleboro is the stepping stone to higher education, the military or the work force; let not our students find themselves unprepared for those opportunities.
From food drives for local food pantries, to hat and glove drives for local children, to donations for earthquake ravaged Haiti, the families of this town have given back to the community and the world through school related activities in many ways. As a community I think it is time we step up and support the needs of the families of Middleboro.