Letter to the Editor

Ridgefield schools want another bond. While schools are needed for the many new families, past blunders by our district haven't included common sense. The district bought 50 acres in late 2004 for a high school. That land now houses a middle school on about 19 acres and the rest of the land (30 acres) was covered with a sports complex. The middle school had two portables installed the first summer after classes began. The prior middle school in downtown Ridgefield had classes taken out of classrooms for K-12 grades during the day and now is used for the superintendent's office, city partnerships or businesses, an early childhood class and other offices. When schools are having large amounts of new students moving into the area all of those classrooms at View Ridge should have been kept to teach those students.

A new K-6 school could have been built on the 30 acres that adjoins the current middle school but is now covered with a sports complex. So we voters are expected to vote for more land and another school over by the fire station.

Another issue that isn't sensible was the demolition of the north classroom building at the high school. Why would a building be removed when classrooms are short anyway? How many classrooms were lost for teaching K-12 students with the View Ridge building and the removal of the north building at the high school?

Part of the original 50 acres sold is now slated for a fire station, too. All of the 50 acres was sold for a school and the taxpayers paid for this land. Now we have a sports complex and a future fire station. If students aren't going back to school full time this fall then I see no need for more money going to a "dead horse." People are losing homes and moving to a state that will allow them to work at a job and their children to attend school. Online isn't the answer. Why do taxpayers spend huge amounts of dollars and then the parents must teach/help them at home?

While the children of this district (if school ever resumes) are often taught in portables in the district we can be assured that our superintendent will be housed in the remodeled building at View Ridge that used to be a school. I do not support the decisions being made in our district nor the huge amount of money that taxpayers are expected to pay.

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(1) comment


Ridgefield tried no less than 6-7 times to bond and build a new high school on that property purchased from the Bartells. The voters said no. So if things didn’t go as you thought they would, start there. The sports complex provides fields for student use that are a necessary part of education. They would have had fields either way, just saved some money having the city foot some of the bill. As for the old view ridge campus, it doesn’t take much research to learn about how our state gives funding, it’s called the SCAP program. The state will give money towards building a new school OR towards a replacement school, not both. To get funding for Sunset/View Ridge on hillhurst, the district had to promise no k-12 education would happen on the old campus. Don’t like those rules? Take it up with the state of WA. Downtown was a gridlock with traffic that was greatly released by moving 50% of the students out of downtown. A smart move imo. Also the land our new elementary school has already been purchased with impact fees. It’s not part of this bond. We are bonding to buy land for a future 5/6-7/8 campus on the south side of Ridgefield.

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