To the editor:

I am writing to express my strong support for the new East Gloucester/Veterans elementary school. As both a parent and a local business owner, I believe this school is vital to the future of our city.

As an East Gloucester School parent, it saddens me to see the state in which the school stands. While wonderful learning takes place at the school, the environment is severely lacking. Just this morning the school opened at 48 degrees because the heating system went out for the third time in less than a week. Students who should be meeting in intervention groups and with specialists in private are forced to work in the hallways. These children deserve a facility that is clean, safe, up to code, and conducive to learning. Building a combined school with Veterans would not only serve a larger part of our community, but it’s also the most fiscally responsible course of action. The numbers in the publicly available plans from Dore & Wittier make this an indisputable fact.

I write this not only as parent, but as a business owner. For our local businesses to thrive, we need outside investment and industry in this city. Showing our dedication to education by building this new school is a vital component in attracting outside investment in our beloved city, and our future depends on this. I urge the people of Gloucester to let go of the mistakes of the past, and agree to give our kids the very best we can.

Justine Laurie

Gloucester

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