School Committee member David Twombly this week urged that a study on the best educational use of the town’s school facilities be given renewed attention, with community meetings as part of the process.
“The public is wondering about the study,” Twombly said at Monday’s remote meeting of the committee. He suggested that a meeting between school officials and the Board of Selectmen be scheduled in the near future and include a presentation of, and discussion about, the report, which was completed last summer.
The overall objective would be to determine how best to educate Hull’s youth and the best way to allocate school space, which has been a controversial issue in the past.
Such a meeting is already on the Hull Public Schools’ radar screen, according to School Superintendent Judith Kuehn, with a potential meeting set for April.
Establishing an ad hoc committee to consider all aspects of the report is also part of the process, with that committee ultimately making recommendations to the School Committee.
The MARS consulting group presented an abbreviated version of its long-anticipated report to the School Committee in June, outlining four options that were based in part on declining enrollments, public concern about excess space, and other considerations. The process has been on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic.
While stopping short of making any specific recommendations, the MARS team did indicate that “enrollment and financial projections do not support Option 1” – maintaining the status quo of continuing to operate three separate school facilities.
The study, which is posted on the Hingham Public Schools website, is the next step in helping Hull’s schools achieve the goals related to a five-year strategic plan geared toward preparing students for success in the 21st century.
School Committee Chairwoman Jennifer Fleming said that it has not been the committee’s intent to disregard the public’s interest in the study, “but we’re still trying to focus on getting our students through the current school year.”