School choice question passes latest hurdle; committee forms

Posted:  Friday, April 13, 2018 - 2:00pm

Alna’s school choice question survived its first reading with the Sheepscot Valley Regional School Unit 12 board April 12, Superintendent of Schools Howie Tuttle confirmed.

In a phone interview Friday afternoon, Tuttle said the first reading needed 7,406 weighted votes to pass, and got 7,943. Whitefield representative Keith Marple was the only member to dissent; the other 12 voted in favor, Tuttle said. Three members’ absences placed their weighted votes in the negative, he said.

To reach district voters, amendments to the district’s reorganization plan take two board readings passing with super majorities of the full board. The second one is planned for the next board meeting, set for 6:30 May 10, again at Chelsea Elementary School, Tuttle said. If it passes, the question will be on track for a district-wide vote at the polls June 12, the same day voters decide the budget, he said.

Tuttle added, the board formed an ad hoc committee of five members to work on answers to questions members had. The committee will meet at the central office at 9 a.m. this Monday, April 16 at Somerville Elementary School. The meeting is open to the public, Tuttle said.

Alna voters passed the question March 23, sending it onto the board. The question proposes dropping publicly funded K-8 private school choice for children who become Alna residents after this June 30.