Letter: School maintenance debate doesn’t need to be ugly

To the Editor:
The debate on school maintenance has sparked some heated dialogue. What now should be done is to move past the finger pointing stage and work toward solutions.
One suggestion is to form an ad-hoc building committee. The committee makeup would be one representative from the Board of Selectmen, the BOE, the person in charge of maintenance for the schools, and from the town; in addition, members of the community at large, preferably people with experience in engineering or building. The committee should be no larger than nine people.
Initially, they would meet on at a monthly basis to establish a protocol, and deem how the schools could be inspected. A priority list of needed repairs would be put forth. We know some of the issues, but certainly there are others. They could present the items to the BOE, with an estimated cost basis. The BOE could use current funds or present them in a future budget. After the initial recommendations, meetings would be on a quarterly basis.
This concept would require cooperation from the school administrators, to make the committee through the BOE aware of any problems as they arise. The committee must understand its mission. It can not present a wish list of items that would fall under the heading of improvements or modernization. It would strictly for maintenance of our schools.
This is only one suggestion, perhaps others have some better ideas. But the adversarial nature of the discussions if they continue will not solve the problem.
Let’s think of the students and staff. And provide a responsible solution to the problem.
Dick Moccia
Highcliff Terrace, Feb. 3