Finance Committee urges School Committee to complete Granville School study now

SOUTHWICK – Finance Committee Vice Chairman Robert Horacek encouraged the Southwick-Tolland-Granville Regional Scool Committee this week to complete a study regarding the Granville Village School prior to Town Meeting.
Horacek read from a letter dated Feb. 8 from the Finance Committee to the School Committee during its Feb. 23 meeting.
“In light of the tax impact, both present and future on the community, of the school building project, the Finance Committee strongly believes that the recently approved Granville School Feasibility Study be implemented and completed prior to the Town Meeting the May 2016,” said Horacek.
The School Committee approved implementing the study under protest from Granville representative Pamela Petschke.
“I can’t vote for initiating this study,” Petschke said, citing the will of Granville residents.
The timing of the study was a concern for Petschke, who said at the last meeting it seemed that once the Southwick campus renovation projects was nearly complete, the heat was turned up on closing the Village School.
“It sends a negative message to Granville residents,” she said.
Committee member George LaBlanc proposed the study and said it was not necessarily in order to close the school and the timing had little to do with the renovation project. LeBlanc said he brought it forward now simply because the committee is discussing the budget and funds should be set aside for the study.
“We’re not looking to do this for September 2016,” said LeBlanc.
Horacek said the Finance Committee doesn’t want to continue the issue after Superintendent John Barry retires at the end of the school year.
“Insofar as the process, and confusion created during same, has been under the current school administration,” Horacek said. “To not finalize this question prior to the new hires and elections could put undue burden on a new administration and the taxpayers.”

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