To the Editor:
First: Shame on you, Karen Bachus and the school committee, for once again allowing the mentor program to be used as a pawn to pressure the city into allocating more money to the school system.
As a retired school psychologist, I can testify to the value of the program. I have known students who were “saved” because they had a mentor. This was a person who they came to realize was there to encourage and assist them with both academic and social difficulties.
The cost of the program is minuscule. The mentors are all volunteers. The only cost is for the staff that screens the mentors and oversees the program.
Second: What is happening to those buildings (and the land) that are no longer needed as schools? (Rhodes, Aldrich, John Greene, Holden, etc.) Why are they not being sold?
Don’t you remember what happened to Potowomut? The school was closed but the school system kept the building to use for storage. The roof was not maintained and it leaked. The stored contents were ruined and the building had to be demolished. Only the brick building was saved and it is now being used as a fire station.
Back in the days when we had men like Domenic DiLuglio as superintendent things were different. When a school was no longer needed, it was sold (Lockwood, Lakewood, Central, Apponaug, and Cowesett). In addition to the money received, eliminating the cost of maintaining the buildings saved money.
It is way past time for the school department and the city to get together with one or more realtors and determine what the market value is for these buildings and put them on the market.
Cruciani is a retired Warwick Schools psychologist