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(5/24/18) - From the Superintendent
Published on May 24, 2018 22:13

Dear Cumberland Valley Community,

Tonight, Cumberland Valley School District hosted a Town Hall meeting to discuss continued growth in enrollment and future facilities needs, including an additional middle and/or elementary school and potential development of the Lee Property, a 108-acre parcel of land which was listed for sale and fronts the Carlisle Pike in Silver Spring Township.

I truly appreciate a few moments of your time to address many topics discussed as part of the Town Hall.

As discussed both tonight and previously, Cumberland Valley is located in the fastest growing county and contains the fastest growing township in the Commonwealth. Even by the most conservative measures, it is estimated that we will add 600 elementary students over the next five years. Factoring in no rate of growth, Cumberland Valley High School is anticipated to approach 3,000 students due simply to the large elementary and middle school class sizes currently advancing through the grades. Current High School enrollment is slightly more than 2,700 students.

Please view the "Town Hall Presentation" on our website at the following link: http://www.cvschools.org/land_purchase_information.

Lee Property:
If you have been following our board meetings or local news, you are aware of the contention that surrounds the district’s decision to obtain the Lee Property. We understand and appreciate both the importance of agriculture in our community and the passions of those who wish to preserve this land.

More information is available in the supporting documents about this property and its historical significance: http://www.cvschools.org/land_purchase_information.

Conceptual plans for the Lee Property:
It is the board’s firm belief that the quality of education in Cumberland Valley School District is supported by our strong sense of community. Our vision is to see this continue as we develop the Lee property with a focus on education, agriculture, and community, as evidenced in our conceptual plans. The plans include a middle school and athletic fields to the rear of the property and in the front of the property, a community garden, a barn and pasture, a learning garden, a hunger garden, a playground, and the McCormick Farm monument. Walking trails traverse the entire property, connecting to new and established neighborhoods and serving as a gateway to the development of a trail to Willow Mill Park.

This provides a unique opportunity for Cumberland Valley School District to partner with organizations like the Natural Lands Trust to develop the land for true public open space. The district believes that, if done properly and in partnership with the Natural Lands Trust, Silver Spring Township, Cumberland County, and local stakeholders, the Lee property can be developed in such a way to be a true community asset for generations to come. In partnership with these stakeholders, the district believes that this offers a unique way in which to truly honor the contributions that the McCormick family has made to the agriculture industry and history, by incorporating agricultural education as part of the vision of the property. Additionally, development of this property provides an opportunity for township, county, and state officials to consider revitalization of the Village of Hogestown.

We are excited for you to share our vision with you. Please view a rendering in the resource center at the following website: http://www.cvschools.org/land_purchase_information.

As we have in the past, please remain assured that the district will continue to develop our schools and our campuses as places where families and residents of all ages can come together to learn, play, and develop a strong sense of community.

With sincere appreciation,

Dr. Frederick Withum III

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