Students' View: We Need A New Durfee
-Photo by, Ismah Ahmed 18'Looking towards the future. A computer rendition of the new
Durfee High School is seen on the 3rd floor of the current
Fall River- The building of the new B.M.C. Durfee High School has caused quite the controversy in the past few months. The prolonged debate on whether or not to increase tax rates to ensure a new building has been the topic of discussion. Students want to experiment in their science labs without the restrictions of a burst pipe. Future students want to come to a school and be proud of being a Durfee student. Unfortunately, with holes in the walls and the leaking ceilings, it is hard to surpass our restrictions. The taxpayers of our city will be voting on March 6th and this ultimately decides the financial fate of the project. This vote will ask whether or not to accept a debt exclusion. This debt exclusion will result in a rise in taxes. The building itself will take $263.5 millions but 62.6 percent of that ($165 million) will be paid by the state of Massachusetts. This leaves Fall River to pay $98.5 million, but out of that, taxpayers have the added responsibility in paying $39 million. The median household is worth $212,000 and the average increase in taxes would be about $115 a year.
Mr. Costa, Dean of Social Studies and also a member of the building committee, stated, "We've spent 3 years putting this project together, combing over every last detail with input from students, teachers, and city officials. We all know the state of the current building. The future of our city deserves this school."
To give a little insight, here are a few statements from current Durfee students.
-Photo by, Ismah Ahmed 18'
Durfee High School's science wing has been closed since
January, after a water pipe burst.
"Well, I definitely think it's (new Durfee) worth it...we need a new building. We definitely need to put in extra effort for a better work environment." -Nicole Youmans-Nosko (Class of 2020)
"I believe we should be like everyone else. Other communities are getting new schools and I feel like we should all get an equal education. I feel like it's (Durfee) very run down." Yeah, it's a great place to learn but there are still problems." -Jayden Lapointe (Class of 2020)
"I think building a new Durfee is amazing. I think it's worth it to get new materials and better classrooms. I think they should build a new Durfee to be more modern with technology. In my health assisting class the beds are broken. We need updated materials." -Gabriella Paiva (Class of 2019)
"I think it's worth it because Durfee is getting really messed up." -Calines Rios (Class of 2019)
"Anyone who suggests no for a new Durfee clearly does not care at all about the future of the youth of this city. As senior in Durfee, I've loved my time here and I want my siblings to be able to have the same experience I did, but it won't be possible without a new school. Our building is crumbling and you can preach poor maintenance all you want but the reality is this: that's your own fault. Students are not to blame for what happened before them and it's absolutely disgusting that people are okay with them having to spend 4 years of their lives in a less than satisfactory building while still expecting them to be excited to go to school and get an education. Taxpayers fund plenty of programs that get abused by the adults of this city, yet are unwilling to fund a new school which would benefit the most important people in Fall River: the youth. It's not about your pockets or your generation anymore. Think long term." -Coral Ferreira (Class of 2018)
Our environment reflects on our school and our school reflects on our students. And this hand and hand reflects on our education. Solution? A new Durfee High School. Student's not only want this, they need it.
-Photo(s) by, Ismah Ahmed 18'
Images above display school wide damages in the current Durfee High School building.