To the Editor:

Region 12 should consider renovating the science labs first and hiring full-time STEM teachers.

Region 12 administration projects the science lab renovation debt cost is $2,651,625 over 20 years.

$2.652 million over 20 years equals an average debt service of $133,000 per year.

Proposal: hire three new full-time high school STEM teachers at $100,000 each year.

Debt service of $133 K plus $300 K yields $433,000 budget cost each year.

This costs less than current existing debt of $459,000 (retired in June 2019).

There should be no budget impact after June 2019.

This is simple, straightforward and cost effective, much less risk than the current VO/AG proposal, and requires less state aid.

This provides the most benefit for our local Region 12 students.

If accreditation requires new science labs, this should be the highest priority for Region 12.

With 230 local students not attending public school, Region 12 should be focused on attracting more existing local students by enhancing the curriculum.

Ed Wainwright

Bridgewater