1 school district would better serve Marion

The Gazette Opinion Staff
Published: April 2 2014 | 1:25 pm - Updated: 7 April 2014 | 3:05 pm in

I found sense in Scott Fruehling’s March 22 letter, “Time for single school district in Marion” suggesting merging Marion and Linn-Mar school districts. The issue was rejected once by Marion district voters and once by Linn-Mar’s voters. Now, however, the time has come to make the change.

Since the previous votes, the Linn-Mar district has grown to surround the Marion district, resulting in waste. Linn-Mar taxpayers are paying to bus students past closer Marion district schools. Similarly, the Marion ISD is struggling to add another elementary. The district is spending $700,000 to repurchase a building.

Obviously, there are issues to resolve. What name would the merged district have? Would Marion High remain 3A or become 4A? How would the two school boards merge?

These questions can be answered successfully. Cedar Rapids’ Catholic schools successfully navigated merging Regis High School and LaSalle High School, resulting in the wonderful success of Xavier High. A merger of Linn-Mar district and Marion district would be easier, since it would only eliminate administrative overhead. No schools would need to be closed or renamed.

Students and taxpayers would be better served with one district. The pride and legacy of each district must be respected and maintained.

Walt Hall



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