Monday, October 28, 2019

Historic Decisions

Some time ago, I had occasion to look back into old minutes of Board of Education meetings from the early 1960's, when the local smaller school districts were first considering consolidation into what is now Benzie County Central Schools.  As one can imagine, it was not a decision that was made lightly, nor was it without controversy.  Indeed, there were many tough meetings, there was a great deal of consternation, and our community struggled mightily before coming to the decision to form our district as we know it today.

Over the past 50+ years, we have evolved into a district that not only is a bedrock of our community and region, but one that affords opportunities for our students that many other comparable rural districts cannot or do not provide.  One only needs to look at some of our alumni to quickly ascertain that a student from Benzie Central can go anywhere and become anything.  Our class offerings, our athletic programs, our arts and performance programs, and our wide variety of extra-curricular opportunities rival districts much larger than ours while maintaining the intimate, small community feel that we would expect from a rural Northern Michigan school district.

Now, after that 50+ years of development, we stand at a crossroads.  The question of the bond proposal before our community is in many ways a question of identity.  It's a question of who we are and what we want to be.  Our buildings are aging, our infrastructure is in need of major work, and the resources required to do the work are significant.  The path forward to is ask you, our community, for your support.

In 1962, our region stepped forward, took some risks, and created something remarkable that was designed to stand the test of time.  Here in 2019, we stand before you asking again to be a part of something that will withstand the test of time and help us continue to grow and evolve.  We have an opportunity to shape not only the future of our kids, but indeed, the future of our community as a whole.

A strong school district comes from a strong community of support.  And indeed, once that strong district is established, it can serve as a foundation to maintain and further strengthen a community for generations.  Now is the time to act.

Please be sure to make your voice heard and VOTE November 5th!

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