MAPS meeting tonight a key one for public to attend

The Marquette Area Public Schools Board of Education is expected to make a decision tonight on accepting a new grade alignment proposed by its Strategic Planning Facilities Subcommittee.

The proposal is as follows: make all the district’s current elementary schools K-5 buildings, along with the Graveraet; move the Marquette Alternative High School, currently housed within Graveraet, to the Vandenboom Early Childhood Development Center, displacing the Marquette County YMCA’s early childhood program.

We’re excited to hear the board is looking at this issue again, given the proposal was made in July.

Board members have said they want more public input before making such a big decision, and we laud them for making the effort to reach out to the community at large, especially since this board is often criticized for being “out of touch” with that very same community.

But we also believe the time has come to make a decision, one way or another. Only so many surveys can be taken, so many public comments made at board meetings, so many emails or phone calls can be seen or heard before every opinion comes to light.

It seems that, nearly five months after the idea was first proposed, the board surely knows what people think of it.

Obviously this alignment will make some people unhappy – any alignment will do that. There is no perfect solution to this problem. There never will be.

But with instruction in some schools taking place in hallways and closets while other buildings sit half-used, it’s time to fix this issue once and for all.

If the board believes this proposed alignment is the best way to do that, then we encourage board members to vote in favor of it. But, if some believe a new plan needs to be drawn up, then they should vote against it.

What we hope doesn’t happen tonight is another continuation – another delay – of this decision.

The meeting is scheduled to take place at 5:30 p.m. inside the Marquette Senior High School Library.

We encourage all families within the district to attend.