Many of you remember 2014 well. Our school was consolidated by a spite vote thrown by Rich Valley school board member, Mac Buchanan. Furthermore, his 11 minute speech about our community is still available on youtube for those who want to listen to it as well as the lackluster comments of our own Rye Valley school board representative. This topic of discussion is being reactivated according to a recent article in Smyth County News quoting Buchanan on the topic.
The moment our school was consolidated, we lost a huge chunk of the student body and our school was permanently damaged at that point. It was well known that our enrollment would never come back up to what it was before, it was widely that the next move would be closure and now that discussion is beginning to come up again. Well folks, Sugar Grove needs to discuss this issue as well and hold our school board member accountable for his past voting record and the votes he will cast affecting our school between now and the end of his term in 2018.
Sugar Grove cannot allow the school board to take another vote in favor of something that damages our community and economics the way consolidating our school has. The time to begin taking action is RIGHT NOW. We all know that our school will be the one targeted for closure when this issue comes to a vote and we all know that despite 972 petition signatures which was more than 90% of the registered voters in our district, different options were not sought. Instead, a simple “no” vote was cast that didn’t matter at that point because of all of the “yes” votes that had been cast prior by our representative in compliance and favor of the Facilities Master Plan which has several scenarios for facilities management throughout the county that a majority of which result in closure for Sugar Grove School.
The Rye Valley District has two local elections coming up. The position of County Supervisor for Rye Valley will be up for grabs again in 2019. The position of School Board representative for Rye Valley comes up again in 2018. Those are two very important positions for our community all things considered.
We should be using the next two years wisely, seeking out qualified people to fill these elected positions in such way so as to move our community forward and promote the best interest of our community’s future and economic development. What we shouldn’t be doing it sitting around thinking that something will happen. No, things don’t just happen by themselves. If you are interested in either of these two offices, ask questions, get the information you need and complete the paper work with the appropriate individuals to establish that you will be seeking an elected office. Sugar Grove deserves a bright future that we are never going to have if our school closes and other matters of local government are left hung out to dry as has been the case for the last several decades concerning our community.