IN RESPONSE to the letter published in the Villager and on the Cafe and signed by Woodstock Academy Corporators -
In the past six months, a group of concerned citizens has spent time reviewing the Woodstock Academy’s application for expansion of its athletic fields adjacent to Bentley Field. As concerned citizens, we never stated that we are in “opposition” to the expansion of fields, or to the Woodstock Academy. We acknowledge that the Woodstock Academy has a need to expand its athletic facility. We also believe that an end goal of “superior” education includes provision for both academic facilities and athletic facilities that meet current standards.
Subsequent to the above and related to the Academy Corporators’ letter in which it was “resolved”–
No one in the group of concerned citizens strives to “change the endowed nature of the Woodstock Academy.” Furthermore, we too, gratefully acknowledge that the quality education offered by the Academy is due to an exemplary, dedicated faculty and staff.
1. The Academy’s illustrated priority as witnessed by the focused pursuit of a special permit for a large athletic expansion on unsuitable land and with an incomplete plan.
2. The lack of an Academy promised long-range plan with timelines and budgets for ALL needs apparent.
3. The lack of a contract between the town of Woodstock and the Woodstock Academy.
4. Woodstock’s Conservation Commission, as well as the Academy’s consultant engineer firm (Design Professionals), produced similar reports in their separate reviews of the application. Both reports warn that inadequate supervision during construction, combined with incomplete planning, will cause probable environmental harm and ongoing costly maintenance. It is questionable whether the plan as submitted meets the requirements of the 2004 CT Stormwater Manual or the 2002 CT Guidelines for Soil Erosion and Sedimentation Control within a primary regional watershed.
We recognize that these are difficult economic times for all families. We seek a superior education for all children at every level in Woodstock. When basic needs at the Academy go unmet, we question the prudence of proceeding with the construction of a massive, costly athletic complex on untenable land.