Home > Uncategorized > No State Money = No Neighborhood School… but Nevertheless, NH North Country Remains Opposed to Broad Based Taxes

No State Money = No Neighborhood School… but Nevertheless, NH North Country Remains Opposed to Broad Based Taxes

January 27, 2019

The Manchester Union Leader recently reported on the decision of the Berlin NH School Board to close Brown Elementary School, it’s last neighborhood elementary school… and the reason had everything to do with money. Corinne Cascadden, the Superintendent in Berlin and former principal of the Brown Elementary School was saddened at the news, but declining enrollments coupled with the loss of State “stabilization (i.e. equalization) funds spelled certain doom:

Had enrollment been the only challenge facing the Brown School, Cascadden said the school board might have entertained a closure conversation in three to five years, but the fact that Berlin has not received “stabilization” grants from the state since 2016, moved that date up considerably.

Since 2016, Berlin has lost a cumulative $879,295 in aid and therefore closing the Brown School, while difficult, “was the only choice the school board had,” she said.

The closure is expected to save the school district about $300,000 annually.

The folks in Coos County are reliable GOP voters. The voted for Trump in 2016 and Sununu in both 2016 and 2018… and in so doing continued to vote for the political party that created the problems they face in their local economy and local schools. At some juncture, a page may turn or a light may go on, or a lightening bolt will strike (choose your own tired metaphor)… and the voters in communities like Berlin will see that their community’s decline is the result of the GOPs commitment to increasing the bottom line of corporations… and may even see that corporatist neoliberals are doing the same thing. When that day comes it might be possible for NH to adopt a broad-based tax that could provide the funds needed to make communities like Berlin vibrant again.

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