Our family moved to Scarborough seven years ago. Part of the appeal was the reputation of the school system. Last year I spent two mornings a week volunteering in my daughter’s school, where I saw the daily dedication of teachers and staff to the children. Unfortunately her school needed extra help in a library where the position of a full-time librarian had been cut, and in her class of 20 where there was no aid, only parent volunteers. Her classroom begged parents for Band-Aids and tissues. Her class trips for the year were also canceled, though thanks to a creative teacher who received a grant they went on one big trip.
Scarborough’s school system has a great reputation, but these were not examples of a well-supported school. Shockingly, we spend the least per student of any of our neighbor towns. This is unacceptable. I was surprised to learn recently that the Scarborough teachers have started this year without a signed contract. They also happen to be one of the lowest paid groups compared to the surrounding towns’ teachers. Is this what we want for ourselves?
It’s time they settle the contract and give the school the support it needs and show the teachers we care about our future and theirs, so that we can keep the level of excellence we know we deserve. Our school is the backbone of our community and I hope we do not paralyze ourselves with this fight.