Do not forget to Vote
While I make it a point to respect the Town Meeting members and Selectmen who spend far more time on town issues that I do, every once in a while a question arises where my silence would be unacceptable, and the vote we will cast on Tuesday, September 20 on the future of Minuteman Regional Vocational High School is one such question.
I cannot say this more clearly or emphatically: Please get out and vote YES.
In Lexington, there will be only one polling place, the new Community Center at 39 Marrett Road. The hours are noon to 8PM. Please note that you can, as my wife and I have done, vote in advance in the Clerk’s office at Town Hall, 1625 Massachusetts Avenue.
Minuteman is a gem, one of the truly bright spots in the state’s education firmament. It serves students in ten communities and beyond with programs designed, at once, to advance them academically and prepare them for careers. Minuteman led the pack in the creation of programs in environmental sciences and bio-tech, among others, responding early to emerging career markets even while continuing to offer more traditional programs like engineering, healthcare, and culinary arts. Minuteman graduates have gone on to the best colleges and universities and to successful careers where, absent the curriculum offerings and dedicated faculty at Minuteman, they might have gotten lost in a traditional high school. Our kids and our communities are richer for Minuteman.
So why the vote now?
For as long as I’ve been in public life, first as a Town Meeting member and more recently as the State Representative, the tired old Minuteman building has been unable to keep up with what’s going on inside. Things have gotten so bad that the school’s accreditation is in jeopardy. The New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), while praising every aspect of the school’s teaching, has placed Minuteman on “warning” status solely because of the building.
Years of planning have gone into the design of an updated and much-needed new campus. A $44 million state match has been secured to cover nearly half of the anticipated construction costs. But that match, and, indeed, the building’s future, requires us to act.
We need to step up and vote to approve the project.
I’m happy to discuss any aspect of this with you if you either call my home (781-862-6181) or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
But please do not miss this vote on September 20. We have an opportunity to secure a good educational experience and a secure future for generations of students to come. Let’s just do it.
Vote, and vote yes, for Minuteman on September 20.
Jay R. Kaufman