Albert Bridge School will remain open

To the editor,

Albert Bridge School is not going to close. If you hear anyone spreading rumors that Albert Bridge School is closing, please take the time to dispel this misinformation. Neither is West Windsor being acquired by Windsor, as some have mistakenly been led to believe. No — the towns of Windsor and West Windsor both voted to merge our districts into a new entity. We named it Mount Ascutney School District.

It is true that the West Windsor School Board is winding down. In just a couple of weeks, our respective positions will sunset as the Mount Ascutney School District comes into force on July 1. (You are welcome to attend our final West Windsor School Board meeting on Monday, June 24, at 4 p.m.) Thereafter, the three West Windsor Board members will continue our work as your elected representatives on the six-member Mount Ascutney School District Board.

West Windsor’s voters placed Albert Bridge School as the highest priority last year; our merger was an effort to support that desire to keep our school open. As we look down the road to the State Board of Education’s future plans to consolidate supervisory unions, we are actually in a much stronger position to extend, and bolster, the life of Albert Bridge School. If we had remained a small, solitary district, we would have been underrepresented in an expanded SU that included even more, larger, districts; we would have immediately lost voice, and our school would have been shuttered in the blink of an eye. Instead, we will be part of a brand new district seeking to grow Albert Bridge and its students to their fullest potential.

To reiterate that last point, Mount Ascutney School District has no plans whatsoever to close Albert Bridge School. On the contrary, we have been talking about how to start filling classrooms with students from Windsor choosing to attend school here, starting with 2020’s incoming kindergarten class. Each year thereafter will see a lively and full kindergarten, with former kindergarteners advancing through successive grades until we have the school filled up. We’ll keep expanding and investing in our place-based curriculum; we’ll continue to enable Windsor School’s countless improvements and expanding achievements; we’ll spend considerable time and energy seeking input from our communities to help us transform our new district through deliberate, significant, positive change. We are entering an exciting time, and we need your trust — and participation — in the process.

Mount Ascutney School District’s board is composed of six people who are enthusiastically committed to creating a brand new district, starting with what we already have, but expanding our view to include some powerful ideas that enable all students to become everything they can.

Our mission is “To honor, encourage, and celebrate the excellence, diversity, and aspirations of each learner through creative and motivating challenges”.

Please join us in looking forward tremendously to enacting the potential created by these words.

Sincerely,

West Windsor School Board

Elizabeth Burrows, Chair

Nancy Pedrick, Vice Chair

Bill Yates, Clerk

West Windsor, Vt.

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