This isn’t what’s on the table, though. What the School Committee wants to do (and would have done this week had Janet Crane been present) is ax Saltonstall’s extended day just because they want it gone. No other reason. Just to make it go away. They don’t like it, never have, and never will. The performance targets are a moving target — like Lucy and the football. There is no alternative; there is nothing that is proposed to do this coming school year with the money, and there are no results from the pilot summer program proposed for this year to compare to.
To be clear: This is not happening because another school is being hurt by the Saltonstall extended year. This is not to make a hard sacrifice in order to save or enhance programs at another school. This is entirely because some members of the School Committee want the extended year gone, and they’ve worn down the opposition at last. When the next school program is as unpopular with the School Committee (K-8 at Salts and Bowditch?), what will happen then?
Meanwhile now, in July, they will probably get their wish. To keep with the Groundhog Day theme, all the Salts parents will show up again to protest, and the School Committee will at last succeed in taking their antiquated ideas and make all of Salem’s schools the same height — by trimming back the legs of the taller person. I hope their victory makes them proud.
Josh Turiel is a Ward 5 city councillor and a Saltonstall parent.