Sunday April 28, 2013

April 30 is a monumental opportunity for the citizens of North Adams. Your individual action and vote is critically important to the future and well-being of the educational system of our city.

The millennium brought with it a tremendous force -- digital technology, and it is changing the face of education as we know it. New federal and state mandates require dramatic adjustments to our educational practice. They require transitioning from a chapter by chapter stand up and deliver model to a standards-based common core method of instruction. To be successful in this new world children need to be equipped with critical thinking skills. Students must be trained to think globally and become project based problem solvers. They must be able to manage themselves in a collaborative setting and possess well-versed communication skills. Their ability in the use of technology will be critical to their success as productive citizens.

The new Conte is exactly the type facility that will foster these necessary skills. We have spent countless hours with qualified experts in the field developing a school environment that promotes and insures this happening.

Next Tuesday, everyone will have a choice and all will have a voice. The ballot outcome will determine if you will be remembered as a community that stood up preserving your past and securing our children’s future or a community that let a tremendous opportunity slip through your fingers.

John F. Kennedy said it very simply, "The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining." Well ladies and gentlemen, the sun is shining and together we can get this done.

We need to be vigilant in our quest to make every possible advantage available to help children find their own pathway to a successful future. The choice is simple. Vote YES on the Conte School plan.

JAMES E. MONTEPARE

North Adams

The writer is superintendent of Schools North Adams Public Schools.