The Foster-Glocester School District’s oft-maligned budget was approved by voters Tuesday night as the mini-vans in the high school parking lot outnumbered the four-wheel drive pick-up trucks by just enough to stave off threatened cuts from the already skeletal plan. If the budget had been slashed any deeper, it would most likely have been Ponaganset’s storied school sports, music and extracurricular programs that would have been lobbed off with the first blow of the taxpayers’ angry halberd. (A tax savings to be eagerly re-invested at a Foxwood’s bingo table, no doubt.)
Many who annually war against Ponaganset’s budget fail to see the value of these activities, and would shed no tear at their eradication. Yet student after student not only reap the benefits of the programs, but they also excel at them. Local media has been peppered as of late with engaging stories of Ponaganset students who have earned spectacular achievements as a result of their extracurricular participation.
It could be argued that these successes are a result of involved parents, or even (gasp!) dedicated teachers. Perhaps true. But there can be no doubt that the mere existence of these programs and the opportunity and exposure they offer are irreplaceable, and provide students an enrichment, meaning and perspective on their lives that are a financial bargain by anyone’s measure.
Ponaganset Sending 21 Musicians to All-State Concert — The Valley Breeze — 3/16/11
Ponaganset’s Kerri Nadeau Wins R.I. Reds Award as “Silent MVP” — The Valley Breeze — 3/16/11
These two teens got a thirst for politics at an early age — The Woonsocket Call — 3/13/11
Long ordeal over, Ponaganset’s Lemoine has her life, game back — The Providence Journal — 2/26/11
Mount’s senior wind ensemble will perform student’s Celtic composition in Ireland — The Valley Breeze — 3/9/11