Schools, not recreation centers, make communities desirable

Thursday, April 10, 2014

With The Oregonian editorial board’s recent push for investing in Hillsboro’s civic projects, we once again find ourselves in a debate over how to spend Washington County’s Gain Share funds.

The editorial board laid out a compelling narrative, presenting a new recreation center and fairgrounds event center as a solution to reduce the number of people who see Hillsboro as just a place to work, rather than a place to live (“Improving Hillsboro’s civic inventory,” April 4). I agree with the goal — creating a Washington County where people want to work, play and live — but I disagree that the solution to that challenge lies in tens of millions of dollars in event and recreation centers.

I submit that the secret to a strong neighborhood and community doesn’t start with a rec center or an events center. It starts with great schools. If the city and county are going to spend money to make Hillsboro great, I suggest they get serious about making our school districts here the best in the state.

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