Over the past several years, the Reading Public Schools have seen a significant crunch for classroom space in our RISE preschool and at our five elementary schools. This need for classroom space is the result of an increased need for Special Education programs, and a rapidly increasing demand for RISE preschool and full day kindergarten. Since 2011, the School Committee and Administration have been working to solve this challenging problem.
Over the summer, the School Committee voted to form a sub-committee co-chaired by School Committee Vice Chair Chuck Robinson and committee member Jeanne Borawski to analyze the need for additional classroom space in our schools and to identify a solution.
On Wednesday, October 22nd, the Early Childhood Space Needs Sub-Committee held it’s first meeting at the Reading Public Schools Administration Offices. Twenty-one community members, elected and appointed officials, and educators generously volunteered their time and talent to work together toward a solution that is educationally sound and community-driven. In the room were parents, concerned citizens, Town Meeting members, two members of our town’s Finance Committee, and two members of our Board of Selectmen. There were teachers, parents, school administrators, and residents with backgrounds in general contracting, engineering, and design. There is wide agreement that we have a challenging problem to solve, and it was impressive to see such a thoughtful, talented group committed to solving it.
At this first meeting, the focus was on identifying our space needs. A power point presentation of the first meeting is attached. At our next meeting on November 12th at 7:00 p.m. at the Reading Public Schools Administration Offices, we will discuss how to maximize community engagement in this process. We encourage you to attend. Each meeting is a public meeting and will be posted as required by the Open Meeting law. Updates will occur regularly on the Pathways Blog .
We look forward to providing updates on the progress of this committee.