River View making plans to tackle challenges

| August 17, 2015

You can’t help but notice that the world is moving pretty fast nowadays. It won’t be long before technology makes workplaces and colleges unrecognizable to many of us. The challenge our schools face is making sure our students can keep up. Today, they need to master an entirely different set of skills—along with the “three R’s.” If our students are going be ready for life after graduation, we need to think ahead. Right now our schools are facing some very serious issues, but we have a plan to address them.

The first thing we have to do is to make sure our schools can operate. Our school board recently voted to place a renewal of our current operating levy on the ballot this November. This renewal does not raise taxes. It helps provide updated textbooks our students need, keeps our heat and electricity on, and keeps our programs running. It’s critical for our schools.

Once we have that out of the way, we are going to have to do something about our buildings. I appreciate their history and character as much as anybody, but right now they are draining our resources and holding us back. They are outdated and inefficient, and many of them present significant health and safety hazards. Our kids and our community need something better.

Especially considering our declining enrollment, we cannot continue on this path for long. It is too expensive, and it simply won’t work. The problems and costs that come with our current buildings will not go away on their own—they are only going to get worse. It is up to us to find a solution that works.

Over the coming months, you’re going to be hearing a lot from us. We have a lot to do in a very short time period, and it is important that we are up-front and honest with our residents. We want to make sure that you know exactly where we stand and what our plans are.

If you’d like to keep up on all of the latest news and information about River View Local Schools and our funding and facility needs, you can find us on Facebook. If you would like to speak with someone directly, please feel free to contact my office.

Regards,

Dalton Summers

Superintendent

River Local School District

Category: Letters to the Editor, Opinion

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Article contributed to The Beacon.

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  1. Mae Butts says:

    Riverview School Levy
    On July 6, 2016, our household received the brochure and very vague letter from RV Board of Education informing us of the Board's decision to place a 5.2 mil bond issue on the ballot on August 2nd,2016. The letter stated to its Licking County residents that this levy would be a "huge financial commitment to the community." The letter stated that over the past year the RV Board has been trying to educate its residents as to how the decision was made, what the plan looks like, what the cost would be and the reasons for the ballot decision. The letter went on to say, as Licking County residents do not use the same media outlets as the Coshocton County residents so the informational brochure was being provided! As this is the first notice our household has received from the Board I will assume this was its attempt to finally inform its Licking County residents as to what has been communicated to Coshocton County voters for the past 3 years. After reading and rereading the brochure and letter I have several questions for the RV Board of Education. Let us start with, why over the past year were we not provided with any data from the steering committee appointed 3 years ago which would substantiate the allegations stated in the brochure that our 4 elementary schools are seeing the "rapid enrollment drops" ? Where is the data that would substantiate that certain elementary schools are operating half empty and could be scheduled for closure? Why were we not provided with any data regarding alleged fire safety and security risk of the students, or data that identified which ADA standards are not being met at the schools in question? Where is data which substantiates the brochure's bulleted statement that the HVAC plumbing and electrical systems at the schools create “poor learning environments” for the RV students? Where did the appropriated funds come from that paid for this study and why are names and qualifications of the individuals appointed to the steering committee not provided. Why have we not been provided with the recommendations and options provided to the RV Board of Education? Was the data in question provided to the Coshocton residents? I believe these a valid questions that any reasonable property owner, taxpayer or voter, be it Licking or Coshocton would ask prior to agreeing to take on such a (in the RV Board's own words “such a huge commitment”) In my opinion the brochure provided by the RV Board of Education, in its" attempt to inform the residents of Licking County" of it levy proposal in inadequate at best and is not worth the cost of the paper it or the postage the Board paid to send it. as it fails to provide any data which validate the Board's allegations that Riverview school buildings are outdated, inefficient, and/or too expensive to operate. I do not think it is in anyway reasonable for the RV Board to leave its Licking County property owners in the dark for almost 3 years then a mere 24 days prior to placing a $43,456,780 levy on the ballot expect residents to blinding agree to except the Board's levy proposal. I would encourage a no vote on the proposed school levy
    Mae Butts, Licking County