opinion Newport Rhode Island

In response some recent criticisms, I have to say that, if you really care about our kids and our local economy you may want to reconsider your position. 

Both towns have declining student enrollments. Young families cannot afford to move into either Middletown or Newport, and both schools offer limited curriculums. 

Middletown is made of nearly 50% part-time residents. I’m not sure what Newport’s percentage is but it probably is in that ballpark. 

Ask any coach in Middletown or Newport and they will tell you they struggle with getting enough kids to field teams.  My guess is in a few years neither Middletown or Newport will be able to field a football team or be competitive. 

Ask any local Electrician or Plumber about finding qualified help for good paying jobs, and each will tell you they can’t find the help they need. 

A one-time 80.5% reimbursement from the State is a significant break for the taxpayers in both towns. 

Although Newport has solved the Rogers HS issue, Thompson Middle School is still an unresolved and an expensive issue for Newport taxpayers. 

Many of the adults on the Island all attended Rogers HS at one time, so arguments about keeping the schools separate seem to be a flimsy argument unless it is just being used to hide another less acceptable argument. 

The prize in Regionalization is that our children will gain substantial educational opportunities, that will not be possible should we go on our own. 

What we should be asking is what will happen if we don’t Regionalize, and that in my mind is far scarier than if we do. 

This issue is much bigger than sports; it is about giving our children the very best education possible just as our parents and grandparents did for us.

Submitted by Gregory Huet, Candidate, Middletown School Committee and Middletown resident

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