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New schools add to county

Taxpayers have gotten their money’s worth in Ironton and South Point school districts, but now the repayment needs to come in higher test scores and improved learning.

Ironton’s elementary and middle schools and South Point and Burlington elementaries each open their doors Wednesday. Parents, educators and taxpayers alike should be proud of these state-of-the-art facilities that will bring 21st Century education into the classrooms.

Critics, and there were some in both districts as the administrations needed multiple attempts to pass the property tax levies, will say that buildings don’t educate children.

And they are right.

But our teachers do and we can’t expect them to do that without all the tools available and all the opportunities that students have elsewhere in the state.

This helps level the playing field and positions Lawrence County well. Our county can use quality schools in all its districts as a valuable marketing tool.

Business and industry leaders always factor in the quality of public schools before building in a region. They look at quality of life for their employees plus factor in that quality schools will lead to a trainable, skilled workforce.

South Point and Ironton were the last of the county’s seven public school districts to get new facilities.

Locally, taxpayers have been resistant to approve more taxes. A variety of levies have been voted down over the years.

But these two school districts — and the children they serve — have benefitted greatly from the taxpayers’ generosity.