To the Editor:
On June 6, there will be an all-day vote at the Plainville Fire Station regarding renovations to Wheeler Elementary School. I strongly encourage you to vote Yes to this much-needed project. I have a very strong personal attachment to Wheeler. Not only did our son attend the school, but I taught and volunteered there as well.
There are several reasons to vote ‘yes.’ Wheeler is currently not up to current local, state, and federal code both inside and outside the school, including those required under the federal Americans With Disabilities Act.
Safety is another concern, not only in the drop off/pick up areas but also in the vestibule area where it is difficult for the office staff to monitor visitors once they are admitted to the building.
The current learning environment is in critical need of improvement. Some of the repairs and upgrades needed include roof, walls, windows, doors, as well as the mechanical, plumbing, and electrical systems. It is not uncommon to see buckets in the hallway and classroom due to the leaking roof. In addition to other building and site code repairs and upgrades, Wheeler is the only school in the district that is not wholly air conditioned.
Lastly, if we vote ‘yes’ now, we can take advantage of a state reimbursement program (up to 65 percent reimbursement) that may not be available after June 30. If we wait to make improvements, we risk increasing costs of building repairs and bringing the Wheeler building and site into compliance with the ADA.
Investing in our schools benefits everyone - our children, our community, and our property values. Your ‘yes’ vote on June 6 is critically important for the success of this project.