Area lawmakers are expressing their concerns this week about a Democrat proposal to regionalize school districts based on the current Probate Judge map, which means Amity Regional School District #5 would be broken up.
Under the bill, S.B. 454, the Orange School district would be merged with Milford; Woodbridge would be merged with Ansonia, Derby, and Seymour; Bethany would be merged with Hamden.
“This proposal to mandate the regionalization of all Connecticut’s schools is completely misguided. If you look at the current probate map, there will be students from around the state with impossible commute times to school, this plan doesn’t make sense. Left as is, the plan will break apart already regionalized school districts like Amity for example, which is made up of Woodbridge, Bethany and Orange. I believe that we should put our trust in the towns to decide what is best for their communities and schools,” said Rep. Themis Klarides
“This proposal would penalize a school district that already regionalizes,” said Rep. Charles Ferraro. “I haven’t heard from local officials who believe that this is a good idea. You would think Democrat lawmakers would consult with their Boards of Education, First Selectmen, and Mayors before proposing something so ridiculous.”
“Amity Regional is an educational success story, we should hail, not eliminate. I will fight to defeat any bill which looks to end Amity current regional district,” Rep. Kathy Kennedy said, who is an Amity alum.
“This policy is nonsensical, shortsighted and destructive,” Sen. George S. Logan said. “We will work as a team to defeat it. We will need the support of parents, educators and students in order to stop this from becoming reality. Please spread the word about S.B. 454 – we must speak out with a united voice against it.”
Amity Regional School District #5 currently is comprised of Bethany, Orange, and Woodbridge. The towns don’t regionalize schools K-12 and the bill only excepts districts that do.
The bill is now before the Education Committee.