Online Petition Seeks Vote To Regionalize School District
In the aftermath of last week's failed school facilities referendum, a concerned resident or two have created an online petition asking the school district and the borough council to take a vote on whether or not Mildand Park High School should enter into a regional school agreement.
The change.org petition titled, "The Midland Park Town Council and Board of Education: Set a date for a town wide vote to regionalize High School," reads:
The Midland Park Town Council and Board of Education
Set a date for a town wide vote to regionalize High School.
Give the towns people the pros and cons on regionalizing our high school and set a date for a town wide vote on the issue.
In the commentary section of petition, its creator writes, "We need a safe place to educate our children. In light of the events in Newtown, and since our school referendum didn’t pass; our schools are in a state of disrepair and there are many non-compliance issues. If the town doesn't want to pay extra taxes to repair the school and future safety issues, then perhaps we can regionalize with a school such as Northern Highlands. Give the towns people the pros and cons of being part of Northern Highlands and let them decide once and for all if we should regionalize or not. After this vote is done, we can then, take the next steps to fix our schools, either way."
According to district officials, the school board is not currently in official discussions to merge with other districts, however, informal discussions have taken place between Midland Park district and Northern Highlands Regional High School. Both schools are in agreement that a formal independent study would need to be conducted before a determination could be made.
"The only possible option for Midland Park would be to embark on a send/receive agreement for our 9-12 graders, the same arrangement currently in place for HoHoKus and Saddle River Schools," School Trustee Pete Triolo explained. "Please keep in mind that our district would need to keep all three of our school buildings open in order to house our K-8 student population, even if our high school students attended a school outside of our district. Godwin and Highland alone cannot handle an injection of our 7-8 grade students."
Additionally he noted that Godwin School cannot be closed because we have a long term agreement with Bergen County Special Services to house their hearing impaired program. Highland School cannot be closed because it has one of only two gymnasiums in the borough that can be used for the Borough's recreation sports programs along with several of the district's middle school sports programs.
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