Vote "no" to support Andover's future
To the Editor:
There has been a looming fear in Andover these past weeks, as we face the question of death to our “hidden gem” of a community.
You may not feel it in your town, but you should. As a region, closing a remote community school impacts everyone. For 200 years, Andover has been a provider of manufacturing jobs for area residents – not just Andover residents. Since the closure, I have been involved in engaging new business to move into the Andover Wood Products mill-complex, so I know the challenges. We are having success. It takes time. Loosing our local school will have a negative impact on development. Thinking about this vote as “just closing a school” is short sighted.
Unlike our SAD 44 partners, Andover is at the end of the road. And, unlike the past when our own Andover COMSAT tax dollars was the lion’s share in supporting SAD 44 budgets, Sunday River is the big supporter for now. Being at the end of the road makes our Village center and community strong. So, what is best about Andover, is also our challenge.
I urge Andover residents to vote to keep our school open. This requires a “no” vote. Please vote “no” on the School Board’s decision to close our school. Closing Andover’s elementary school will gravely hurt this Community and there will be no turning back. Just the discussion has put fear in young families. Fear begets fear. We must stop this. We must embrace and champion the unique qualities we have.
And, what I think is most overlooked in the entire district, is that when Andover succeeds, all towns succeed. If we are able to draw companies to the Mill complex, that will mean jobs for the region - not just Andover. Business will not come to a town without community, without a local school for families.
Andover has a history of pulling together. Weekly meetings have been drawing large groups to research, rally and act on ideas on how we are going to make local elementary education a certainty for our future. Please support this chance for Andover’s future. Please vote “no” on June 16th.