Cumberland Times-News

October 5, 2013

Consolidate the schools at the Memorial Hospital site

To the Editor:
Cumberland Times-News

— Has anyone had the thought that with Memorial Hospital being torn down, a new school could go there?

Fort Hill and Allegany high schools need to be consolidated. Cumberland isn’t growing, and we don’t need two city high schools.

Perhaps the new school could have two campuses: one at Memorial and one at Fort Hill.

One campus could be for grades 9 and 10, and the other for grades 11 and 12.

This would save money for transportation, and would eliminate the use of Braddock Road, a two-lane, curvy, mountain road, which is treacherous in the winter for transportation to Allegany.

As far as the football rivalry (which seems like the only reason we need two schools), this consolidated school could play Mountain Ridge (a school that came about through successful consolidation).

I realize the Allegany County Board of Education now owns the Sacred Heart campus, but since the asbestos has been removed from the buildings, they should be more desirable for sale as a Veterans Administration hospital, a senior living facility, apartments, offices, etc.

I hope the board of education members consider this option. I haven’t spoken to one person who thinks a new school on Haystack Mountain is a good idea.

James V. Smith