This letter is for the frustration brought on over the years concerning our local school districts. Having lived in and graduating from the Jersey Shore School District in 1951, our Alma Mater still stands on Allegheny Street, which now serves as our only shopping mall. It was condemned and a new high school was built on Thompson Street. After some years of use, it became a junior high, and another high school was constructed out of town on a hill overlooking the Borough.
Prior to this period, the Williamsport High School located on both sides of West Third Street was closed because of its condition and lack of space to expand. A new high school was then built out of the city limits, on a hill north of the Newberry area. These decisions helped bring on the added expense of purchasing an armada of school buses and everything that goes with them. These high schools exceeded reasonable limits when built because times were good and school taxes for property owners were reasonable. The reins were handed to the school boards and school administrators and now we are all facing yearly property tax increases that senior citizens and middle class Americans can no longer afford.
Hats off to the Montoursville School District. Their same beautiful high school was being used 64 years ago when they hosted the yearly Lycoming County FFA Judging Contests for agriculture students, of which I was among them. Somehow they managed to balance their budget and as usual there is no tax increase for next year. The Jersey Shore School Board is pondering what to do regarding Policy 707, which deals with community use of school district facilities. They should do the taxpayers a much needed service and scrap Policy 707. Schools are for children and students. They are not glorified community centers that should be open to the general public whenever desired. When the school day ends and the students leave, it's time to turn out the lights and activate the security system.
Weldon C. Cohick Jr.