Mr. Beverly: I would like to respond to your article concerning traffic at the new middle school in Peachtree City. There have been several accusations leveled at the school board and school system in this article and I would like to respond. My response is representative of ME and not the entire Board of Education. I can only speak for myself and not the Board.
First statement: “Why did someone not think of the traffic problem before buying the property especially since nobody asked them (PTC) before making the decision whether the eastern city limit school site was a good idea.”
The board tried working with the PTC Council to purchase Riley Field for the new school. At first, they were interested then they said no. Prior to purchasing the current property, we asked if they thought this was feasible and they said yes. There is a minimum acreage the state requires to build a new middle school and there are not that many properties in PTC that meet those requirements.
It was the Board who paid for the traffic study. Realizing it is a critical intersection, it was the Board who solicited Representative Josh Bonner to get the Department of Transportation to attend a meeting with representatives from PTC and the Board to work on the traffic situation. The D.O.T. left the meeting because of the antics of those representing P.T.C.
Second statement: “Unless the Board of Education plans on paving Stagecoach Road.” There have been several meetings about paving Stagecoach Road. At every meeting those representing PTC always want something in return.
They want us to contribute to contribute to fixing the bubble enclosing the Kedron Aquatic Center/pool, provide money for fixing the intersections, giving them the rights to the old gym at the current J.C. Booth as well as the athletic fields, field house, etc.
The meetings have generally begun with a representative from PTC telling us what are the non-negotiables and paving Stagecoach Road is always one of them.
Third statement: The school system is scrambling to get PTC to do something to get us out of a hole we dug. There have been numerous meetings and all have ended due to the lack of willingness of the PTC representatives to work with us.
We are not scrambling to get out of any hole. We have paved a road to the new school. We are building golf cart paths. We would like to have another road for access to the school but, in my opinion, we have provided a paved road access to the school.
There are always two sides to a story. Two government entities squabbling in the media is not a good thing; however, I am tired of all the blame being put on the Board of Education and the school system.
Even the mayor of PTC came and spoke at public comments at a School Board meeting. Now she is trying to “squelch public criticism of another elected body.” Perhaps, as my father use to say, when you point the finger, you should remember the other three point back.
Roy A. Rabold
[Rabold is the former principal of Whitewater High School and a current member of the Fayette County Board of Education.]