Time to rethink LMSD’s 1860 Montgomery Avenue Middle School – Mainline Media News


My main concern in writing about 1860 Montgomery Avenue is keeping the children who live at Penn Wynne safe.

If you haven’t yet hiked the area road from Penn Wynne to Villanova and down Montgomery Avenue to the old Clairemont Farm estate, do so.

But be sure to plan your trip to coincide with the morning rush hour and mid to late afternoon rush hour to experience the heavy traffic along the narrow road of the Dangerously congested County Line or Montgomery Avenue.

Cardinal Rule # 1: Protect Children.

Now imagine yourself being in fifth grade on a Lower Merion school bus with students who are potentially twice your size on a strenuous 2x a day bus ride from one end of township to the other end to one. new college for grades 5 to 8.

How can this make sense or be fair?

So much has happened since Lower Merion School District officials first expressed hope and implemented plans for a third middle school, located atop an impressive hill in the Living Families neighborhood. in Stoneridge, Clairemont and other streets of Rosemont-Villanova Jurisdiction of the civic association.

Topping the list, of course, is the novel coronavirus and the resulting pandemic, which, according to many accounts, is now considered endemic.

The epic shift in our economy, the changing workplace, the way we work and play, the virtual school and reimagined teaching-learning are all major reasons why we at Lower Merion and Narberth, should rethink 1860 Montgomery Avenue and its original intention as a third college.

Add to these radical changes due to COVID-19 and the invasive variants, the increasing residential densification throughout the township and in particular in the western end of Bas-Mérion.

Most recently, Lower Merion Township Commissioners approved another multi-family complex, at Bryn Mawr on Lancaster Avenue and Bryn Mawr Avenue, involving the demolition of three office buildings across from Ludington Library.

Now is the time to rethink 1860 Montgomery Avenue and decide to open the school as a seventh elementary school with a full-time kindergarten.

Cardinal Rule # 2: Keep young children close to the house.

Now is also a good time to re-examine the various flaws in the current plan of 1860 Montgomery Avenue as a middle school and 1835 County Line Road, the former Bennett-DiRocco estate, envisaged, with ownership at 1800 Montgomery Avenue, as a deforested outdoor space. athletics complex.

In order to make the currently planned athletic fields accessible to buses and supporters’ vehicles, the Lower Merion School District hopes to connect the property at 1835 County Line Road to the adjacent neighborhood by opening a cul-de-sac that was used during generations as a park pocket by the residents of the motorhome.

There is no credible assurance that LMSD officials can offer residents of this neighborhood that their streets will not experience increased congestion, pollution, waste, noise and disruption caused by the installation of athletic fields on the property at 1835 County Line Road to the adjoining rear property at 1800 Montgomery Avenue.

Cardinal Rule # 3: Respect families and their neighborhoods.

Additionally, to set up the athletic fields considered essential to the college’s after-school athletic programs, the district is calling for the destruction of nearly five hundred historic trees that make up the multi-generational canopy shared with Stoneleigh.

Cardinal rule n ° 4: Preserve the environment, in particular the canopy of trees.

Obviously, if 1860 Montgomery Avenue becomes a seventh elementary school, there will be no need for deforestation, no ruin of the Rosemont-Villanova neighborhood, and no unfair treatment of Penn Wynne’s children.

It would also reverse the foolish decision to add fifth-graders to college enrollment, which among other negative aspects robs them of the natural leadership opportunities for their level of maturation that they have as older children. elementary schools.

A seventh primary school LMSD would also allow the establishment of a full-time kindergarten in each primary school and avoid the ludicrous concept and prospective practice of a district-wide kindergarten center.

This wise and cautious hub of the Lower Merion School District would ensure the safety and security of the children of Penn Wynne and the residents of Rosemont-Villanova, and reinforce the critical importance of walking and neighborhood schools in Lower Merion.

This solution would also offer an innovation in that the property of 1835 County Line Road with the former Bennett-DiRocco Mansion, located just next to Stoneleigh, could be reused as an environmental workspace for students and a research center. STEM in partnership with Natural Lands.

Cardinal Rule # 5: Let’s go for a win-win LMSD and rethink 1860 Montgomery Avenue.

Mary “Magistra” Brown, professor of Latin at Saint Joseph University, taught Latin in Harriton and Lower Merion for 32 years, and with her husband Jim Brown, former president of the Civic Association of Rosemont-Villanova, raised five children, all graduates of Lower Merion District schools.

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