SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Opinion

June 21, 2013

Stephen Russell: A reason to believe

Why should you send your child(ren) to the Salem Public Schools?

During the past several weeks, I have been asked this question by our City Councilors during their review of the FY14 budget and again by a parent concerned over what kind of a future their child will have if she attends Collins Middle School. My response was, “Let me tell you the Salem story.”

I tell them about . . .

The diverse and dynamic nature of this city. I tell them about the 39 different languages spoken in our schools. I tell them about the mayor and council’s leadership, the new courthouse, the planned MBTA station, the arrival of Footprint Power, plans for a deep water port, downtown beautification efforts, the city’s rich history, our national park and the ferry to Boston, and I tell them about the many other wonderful advantages that Salem offers.

I tell them about the partnerships that we’ve established with Salem Cyberspace, the Business Partners’ Group, the Peabody Essex Museum, the Salem Education Foundation, Salem State University, the 20-year involvement of the Read Trust in promoting science education in our schools, and the Salem Rotary Club’s scholarship and literacy support, to name a few.

I tell them about the coordinated efforts underway to support students through the Latino Outreach Initiative, the work of the YMCA, the Boys & Girls Club, the House of the Seven Gables, the Parks & Recreation Department’s programs, and youth athletics and activities.

I tell them about Salem’s natural beauty, our neighborhood parks, the Common, the Willows, the Point neighborhood’s murals and the many opportunities to engage in a wide variety of activities available in the city and throughout Essex County.

I tell them about what a great place this is to live and bring up children.

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