To the editor:

I am writing this individually as a member of the Hampstead School Board. After the March 8 vote, it was clear to me that a supermajority would not pass the current school expansion project.

After the project failed for the eighth time, the administration and School Board discussed next steps. We unanimously agreed to reduce the cost of next year’s warrant article by revisiting the plan and completing in order of priority. I implore the community to watch the meeting to see for themselves, with discussion starting at the 54-minute mark (https://vimeo.com/691916545).

We heard from voters and community members who participated in a survey about priorities for the project (special education, sprinklers, and safety measures). The School Board will work with the community on the next warrant article, as well as to plan out future years. This will also allow us to save to the capital reserve fund rather than using bonds.

The intent is to present the plan to the community in the coming months so that we can receive input from residents. We would then apply to state Department of Education for consideration to receive reimbursement if the warrant article passes.

Please be on the lookout for communication with details in the coming months. I look forward to working together and helping to increase the involvement of all residents to support plans which represent the town’s priorities.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, I can always be reached at smithd@hampsteadschools.net.

David Smith

Hampstead School Board

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