On Wednesday, October 8th, at the Augusta County Board of Supervisors meeting I voted in favor of tabling the vote on the construction of a new Riverheads Elementary School (RES). It was clear from the comments of other board members that there are serious concerns about a new bigger school. I agree that the current construction plan for RES should be reviewed.
I know there were disappointed parents, students, and teachers in the audience. However, the Board of Supervisors all voiced (including myself) that we must work to address the ailing RES building as soon as possible. We wish to work with the school board to obtain necessary information and address questions before moving forward on such a large project that will affect not only RES but the entire county for the next 10 years.
As you have read in previous posts, I have serious concerns with the Augusta County School Board’s 10 year plan. They included maintenance, repair, and upgrade needs district-wide along with an aging bus fleet that we must plan to replace (more than 75 buses in the next three years at $80,000 each), teacher pay increases to remain competitive with surrounding districts, technology infrastructure that has been identified as a priority by the School Board, and our new SOL scores that will require some sort of funding in order to address.
I look forward to the upcoming meeting between the Augusta County Board of Supervisors and the Augusta County School Board; I stand ready to have the discussion and finally begin work that will improve education for the students at Riverheads Elementary School and the rest of the county.
As always if you have any questions or comments please feel free to contact me, DavidKaraffa@comcast.net
David Karaffa is a member of the Augusta County Board of Supervisors and represents the Beverley Manor District. A registered nurse, he is the Director of Nursing at Stuarts Draft Retirement Community. He currently serves as Chairman of the Augusta County Service Authority, and sits on the Augusta County Ordinance Committee, Property Committee, and Reassessment Committee. He also is a member of the Blue Ridge Criminal Justice Board and its Mental Health sub-committee, and was previously on the CAPSAW Board, Valley Program for Aging Services Board, and the Staunton Senior Center Advisory Board. David and his wife Katie live in Stuarts Draft and have three daughters. He is a regular contributor at LynnRMitchell.com and can be reached at DavidKaraffa@comcast.net.