Letter to the Editor: Bond supports needs and community investment.

October 12, 2021

Letter to the Editor: Bond supports needs and community investment.

Letters to the editor are opinion editorials submitted by readers. Letters to the editor are a long tradition in American journalism. The views and opinions of the writer do not necessarily reflect those of Oceana County Press, its staff or its parent company. For more information, please refer to OCP’s Op/Ed policy.

Dear Editor:

On November 2, residents of the Pentwater Public School attendance area have an important decision to make regarding updates and upgrades to our school’s physical condition. 

I know the building needs updating as I was the Superintendent/Principal from 2013-16 and we started talking about those needed upgrades then. I know the current gym is not designed for a high school athletic competition space as I cringed over the years seeing focused athletes hurling themselves toward a ball with a brick wall inches away. I know that with needed secure access, the school would love to open athletic facilities to the community.

I know that when the community engaged in extensive visioning for the Master Plan, a theater represented a desire for the community. We have seen the value of the arts. Our bands regale the community each year, but, unless they travel to another community, they do not have the opportunity to perform in an environment that allows them to hear the acoustical magic of their efforts. I researched the value of an auditorium for our students and our community. What I verified was the impact of students participating in the arts on both their academic and social development. I found research about how a dedicated and properly designed space can enhance that benefit. I researched the community value of a performing arts center and found interesting and inspiring research on the benefits to residents. I considered all the community could do with an auditorium, and the list of possibilities was long and multi-generational.

Of course a bond issue can be seen as a financial transaction, and on a ballot, it is, but we cannot forget that the result of that transaction is not just a modest increase in taxes, it is about our kids and our community. It is a transaction to provide opportunities for excellence, increased safety, opportunity to compete, exposure to the arts, and opportunities to have first hand experiences with new technologies which can lead to new career opportunities. 

Cementing our ongoing commitment to our kids and community is part of our heritage. I will be voting yes to put Pentwater kids and community first. I hope you will consider both the impact on your taxes, and your investment in the students and community when casting your ballot.

Mary Marshall



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