AP NEWS

Why Are There Not Two Ballot Questions for the Tewksbury School Project?

March 29, 2019

The Tewksbury Elementary School building project will consolidate grades 2-4 (790 students) into a 140,000-square-foot campus. The campus will be built on the current Doucette Field, next to Ryan School (grades 5-6, 580 students). This will create a new school complex (almost 1,400 students) at the already congested, residential Pleasant Street location. An almost $10 million athletic field complex (with synthetic turf field, 1,500-seat bleachers, concession stand, two-story field house) will be constructed behind the new school.

Why is this new elementary school campus being combined with a new athletic field (primarily for high school sports) on the same property? This will change the character of the elementary school.

Why not build the athletic field at a different location? The new field could be built at North Street if the five remaining elementary schools were minimally re-assigned to absorb the North Street School students; then the 67-year-old school would be demolished.

Why are the same abutting neighborhoods also being forced to accept increased use of high school and all level of sports, all day, every day, with the new athletic field? These neighborhoods will be dealing with the traffic congestion/activity associated with the 1,400-student population.

Why is the athletic field not a separate ballot question, when the main purpose of this project is to build a new elementary school?

Please vote no on the current single ballot question on April 6.

PHYLLIS GIBLIN

Tewksbury