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Plans to tear down old Cole County jail and sheriff's house move forward April 16, 2014

Your Opinion: Rebuttal to Terkelsen

Dear Editor:

I’m writing in response to Karen Terkelsen’s letter regarding two public high schools being favored. Unfortunately that letter contained numerous inaccuracies.

As the president of the district citywide Parent Teacher organization, I’ve been involved in the development of the new high school proposal from the very early stages.

The proposal that’s been developed by the school board is designed to address our pressing space needs at our schools at the very lowest cost possible. It’s also about achieving outstanding academic results. Terkelsen says we should be focused on academics then makes the case that more kids could play sports if we had two high schools. That doesn’t make any sense.

The proponents of two high schools want more kids to be able to start on varsity sport teams. They should just be honest about that desire. I for one want all kids in the district to receive a world-class education at the lowest cost to taxpayers. It costs significantly more to rehab the current high school and build a new one.

Then you also have double the operating costs going forward. Bentonville high school where Wal-Mart executives send their kids have a school very similar to what our board has proposed. It has 3,800 kids enrolled. You can get more information about that school at http://bentonvillek12.org/bhs/about.asp.

Our school board has done its homework and developed a plan that will provide our kids with a world-class education at the lowest cost, bring new higher education opportunities to our community with Linn State coming to town, ensure a trained workforce and attract job creators. It’s time for the naysayers to start using accurate information and to be honest about their true motivations in opposing the board’s plan. To get accurate information please visit www.JCExcellence.org.

We have a tremendous opportunity to prepare our kids for the future and to improve our community — but only if we all educate ourselves and start using facts versus hyperbole and misinformation.

Issue-oriented letters to the editor in response to this or about other local topics are welcome. All letters should be limited to 400 words. The author's name must appear with the letter, and the name, address and phone number provided for verification. Letters that cannot be verified by telephone will not be published. Send letters for publication to editor@newstribune.com

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