District, board clash over Rindge Memorial School traffic

  • Jaffrey-Rindge School Board member Forbes Farmer discusses traffic flow at Rindge Memorial School. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The Jaffrey-Rindge School district is at odds with a recent Rindge Select Board decision regarding traffic safety at Rindge Memorial School.

The district and town have been looking at solutions to traffic issues when students are being picked up and dropped off, as roadside parking coupled with an influx of traffic restricts travel.

Rindge Selectmen sent a letter to the board on June 14, stating the town will put no parking signs up on the road by September 2017 if the district doesn’t propose a better solution. 

“It seems to me like this will only inconvenience Rindge parents,” said board chair Laurel McKenzie. 

McKenzie said she would craft a letter to the town, saying the district’s preferred method would be to follow the Rindge Roadway Committee’s recommendation of no left turns out of the parking lot, a recommendation that had previously been denied by the Selectmen. 

Board member Jeff Clark-Kevan said the district is currently looking at traffic flow patterns at all schools, and warrant articles may be crafted in the future to address such issues.

The board agreed to allow EEI — the company currently working on heating improvements and energy savings projects throughout the district — to complete renovation work to Conant’s Applied Technology Center (ATC) building.

The project will be completed for $178,500 or $1,500 less than the amount approved at Town Meeting in March. 

Facilities Manager David Reilly said the project had been put out to bid, but only one incomplete bid. Reilly said EEI decided to submit a proposal after he talked with them. 

A discussion regarding the district’s plans to create a competency-based education model ensued after summer teacher projects were brought up.

Board member Forbes Farmer asked about the cost to the district for implementing such a model, noting he has seen a lot of money go toward professional development and other areas.

Superintendent Reuben Duncan estimated than $90,000 to $100,000 was spent on things like professional development each, but that figure was not in addition to previous budgets. Duncan said it was hard to determine an exact cost, as the district is still working on a strategic plan. 

Nicholas Handy can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 235 or nhandy@ledgertranscript.com. He is also on Twitter @nhandyMLT.