Saturday, November 8, 2008
Building a 21st Century High School
Some elected officials are afraid to back a millage increase to balance the City's budget or to provide a cost-of-living increase for city employees, claiming that this is an awful time to ask citizens to make any greater contribution. Yet, the Fayetteville School Board appears to be willing to make the tough decisions and forge ahead with seeking public support for building a world-class high school for the future of the community and the education of our students. The Board seems unanimous in its commitment to moving forward with the new high school facility, and we could be looking at a millage election next September.
New School Board President Susan Heil said, "This is going to be very pivotal to Fayetteville as well, new and progressive and showing that we’re supporting education." Chief Information Officer Susan Norton added, "This is not just about building a new school. It’s about a dramatic change in the high school culture that will then help us design a building. We feel strongly that they will embrace the changes and want a new school." We hope that Heil and Norton are right.
This is a bold move by the Board, which seems to have recently gained new members and a new spirit that embraces communication with the public. The success of the proposal for funding and building the campus our city needs will depend on complete openness and transparency in the process. The arrogance and fatal mistakes of Bobby New should not be repeated, and they should not be forgotten.