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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Responding to Unfortunate Article ...

Today, February 25, 2009 appears in the Naples Daily News (NDN) an article where the Collier County School Board (CCSB) is quoted as saying that there will be no high school on Marco Island - based on CCSB criteria.

The article is: State won’t allow Collier school district to build a high school on Marco Island : Education : Naples Daily News

The article was written without any input from those of us with a different perspective on the issue - the very same ones working diligently to bring a public high school for exemplary education to Marco Island. This lack of balance is exacerbated considering that the NDN reporter was given our contact information last week during the last school board meeting.

To the issues raised in said article as related to the school, we respond thus:

  • Instead of encouraging and fostering our ideas and motivation for improving education all we hear from CCSB is No, No, No.
  • There is a process by which we can petition the state directly for a high school.
  • CCSB and a private for profit commercial enterprise's portrayal of Tract K deed restriction is completely wrong. The deed clearly states "School Site #2" when it refers to Tract K. This can be viewed on the website marcohigh.com
  • Just because CCSB has set criteria for high schools in terms of size and offering everything to everyone does not make their policies practical, effective or even realistic. In fact, such policies have been shown to be counterproductive to the ultimate goal - education.
  • CCSB use empty seats as the criteria of a system based on dollars and head count, not one based on education.
  • The number of high school students referred to in the NDN article was estimated to be about 300 - a grossly inaccurate number. It doesn't take into account the students in private high schools, home schooled, surrounding areas, or those who depart the area so as not to attend the presently designated high school. Based on the number of children at MICMS alone the number is higher.
  • A premier High School on Marco Island will draw people to the area and therefore obviating the whole "head count" basis for providing facilities. Again, our goal is an exemplary education.
  • The State of Florida and President Obama - as recently as last night - encourage thinking outside of the box when it come to education. That is exactly what we are doing.
  • Our hope is that the CCSB joins us in this effort to bring a High School for exemplary education to Marco Island because we only want what is best for the children especially in regards to their education.
Without further elaboration, this is our position. We welcome working with anyone who shares these ideals.

We ask those who support a high school to express their views with the media so as to ensure that ALL PERSPECTIVES are presented.

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