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Some Southeast Parents Don't See Need for New School Buildings

Mansfield officials are considering whether to build two new elementary schools, consolidating the three existing schools, sequentially over a multi-year period.

Some Southeast Parents Don't See Need for New School Buildings

The Mansfield School Building Project debate has been going on for years.

Should the town build new schools? Renovate its existing buildings? Make repairs as necessary?

The past few years have witnessed a community divided due to personal feelings about the need for repairs vs. the need for new buildings.

At Southeast Elementary School Monday, parents who were willing to voice their opinion on the topic, said they were just fine with the schools as they stand today.

Chris Petersen, the father of a Southeast kindergarten student, told Mansfield-Storrs Patch that those who believe the town's only option is to build new schools, "ought to get their priorities straight."

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“I believe that we ought to work with what we have and I also believe that the tax-and-spend Democrats should think about the taxpayers as much as the children,” Petersen said.

“I believe that these schools are very serviceable. Yeah okay, they [the buildings] need some repairs, but let’s do the repairs at a substantial savings," he said, adding, “I think the students will be well-served with a remodeling project, rather than completely new buildings."

A father of two school-age children who requested anonymity because he is the husband of a school employee said, overall, he "kind of like(s) how it is now."

As the parent of a Southeast pre-schooler and first grader, the man said it wouldn't sit well with him if the project went to referendum and Southeast was not considered as a site for a new school.

"[Southeast] is a central hub," he said. "You have the ball fields right here, the soccer field's just down the street a little bit and it’s between UConn and Willimantic so it is central hub which is nice,” he said.

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