Remarks from Special Town Meeting

I wanted to take a minute to share the remarks I made at last night’s Special Town Meeting, at which Stoneham voters approved funding to fix the High School boiler.

March 14, 2016

Special Town Meeting Remarks

“The High School is almost 50 years old. Many of its building systems are also almost 50 years old. The fact that the original boilers functioned as long as they have is a fortunate – a surprisingly good – thing. I suspect it is at least in part, a testament to the skillfulness of School Department Facilities staff.

As soon as the Middle School was complete, the School Department moved forward on plans to substantially rehabilitate the High School for the next generation of students.

The reality is that there is great demand for state school building funds. There is about a 15% chance of being accepted into the state’s funding pipeline every year.  The School Department has been applying diligently. The renovation will occur, but it’s at best we are 3 to 5 years away from the start of construction.

Until then, we have to keep the High School in good operating order. There are 700 kids in there every single day of every New England winter.

The new boiler system will be in place for the long run, a full 30 to 40 years of use.

I encourage you to support the article to fund the boiler replacement tonight. It’s a long term investment that we should support fully, it’s the most fiscally responsible solution, and it’s just the right thing to do to support our students and educators.”

Rachel for School Committee






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