Your Views: We need Allison for education

Your Views: We need Allison for education
Photo Credit: Missy Schrott

To the editor:

As a teacher and a parent of two daughters, both ACPS students, I sit in a unique position to observe and comment on critical issues facing Alexandria’s public school system. One of the biggest issues facing our students today is capacity. ACPS is bursting at the seams.

This isn’t news to anyone who has been paying attention to our city. As more and more apartments are being built, and as our condo canyons get even denser, our schools just get more crowded. Meanwhile, Douglas MacArthur still sits empty with fencing around its border while its students get bused to Patrick Henry.

And to add insult to injury, Mayor Justin Wilson and others on City Council want to use our limited school property to add adult housing. Co-location of adult housing on our school properties is just, plain and simple, a bad idea. And this housing would, in the case of George Mason Elementary School, take away the only playing fields, baseball diamonds, soccer fields and tennis courts for an entire community.

Alexandria needs a leader who opposes co-location of adult housing on school property and a leader who knows how to fund and build greater school capacity for our community. Allison Silberberg is that leader.

While she was mayor, she and City Council approved and built two new public schools, Patrick Henry and Ferdinand T. Day, plus a new wing at John Adams – all on the West End. Allison is committed to protecting our limited school properties from co-location of housing because she knows that ACPS needs all its land for educational and related purposes.

Allison has a lifelong commitment to education, including teaching, tutoring fourth graders at MacArthur and mentoring students in Anacostia. She will continue to fight for greater capacity for our schools and for academic excellence. The students of Alexandria need Allison as their mayor.

-Jennifer Dougherty, Alexandria