HINSDALE, N.H. - A committee dedicated to exploring the possibility of tuitioning Winchester's teenagers to high schools outside of Keene met with the Hinsdale School Board on Wednesday in what was described as the embryonic stage of the process.
Winchester Withdrawal Committee members Rick Horton, Elisha Jackson, Kevin Bazan, Brian Moser and School Administrative Unit 94 Superintendent Jim Lewis attended the board meeting to discuss the situation. The committee is also looking into possibly tuitioning students to Monadnock Regional High School in Swanzey or Pioneer Valley Regional School in Northfield, Mass.
Horton told school board members it was a monumental meeting, as he heard when he first moved to Winchester that the town and Hinsdale would never be in talks about tuitioning high school students.
Members of the committee asked the school board what Hinsdale High School is like and Chairwoman Holly Kennedy said it is part of a great town and great community. Hinsdale Superintendent Dr. David Crisafulli said the school in state-of-the-art in terms of its technology and the school's students are sent to Brattleboro Union High School for vocational programs.
Horton acknowledged that Winchester and Hinsdale are demographically very similar. Lewis said some of Winchester's teenagers love commuting to Keene because of its atmosphere and city culture, while others dislike that and want a town that resembles Winchester. That would be Hinsdale, he said.
Earlier in the meeting, Hinsdale Police Chief Todd Faulkner spoke of a $125,000 federal grant to have a full-time school resource officer (RSO) and both the school board and Hinsdale Board of Selectmen voted to accept it. Faulkner explained an RSO is an armed officer stationed at a school that can build relationships with students and help with difficult situations young people are uncomfortable discussing with their parents or teachers.