Senator Pearson celebrates the reopening of JJM Cumberland Hill Elementary School
Senator chaired task force that paved the way to address deficiencies
STATE HOUSE — Sen. Ryan W. Pearson (D-Dist. 19, Cumberland, Lincoln) attended the reopening ceremonies of the John J. McLaughlin Cumberland Hill Elementary School Friday evening. Senator Pearson chaired the task force in the Senate and led passage of the statewide school construction program providing critical funding to projects across the state.
“Cumberland is one of the first communities to benefit from the state’s new school construction funding, saving the town millions,” said Senator Pearson, who chaired the state School Housing Aid Task Force. “Cumberland Hill looks amazing and is ready for students with new learning spaces and technology. It would have not been possible if Cumberland did not move quickly, and I have to thank my partners on the school committee and town council especially Councilwoman Lisa Beaulieu and School Committee member Paul DiModica for their support to get these projects on the ballot where we secured almost 80% of voter support.”
Prior to Senator Pearson being elected to the Senate, the General Assembly had frozen all state support of school construction. Conditions deteriorated and concern grew over the number of schools across Rhode Island in need of modern, safe upgrades.
The 2013 task force led by Senator Pearson offered a bold, forward-thinking response to those key findings. The General Assembly took action requiring an assessment of schools across the state, creating the school building authority and offering unprecedented levels of state support to communities to renovate or replace schools across Rhode Island. The completion of JJM Cumberland Hill School is a key milestone in the town’s plan to update all Cumberland schools.
“I want to thank all of our teachers, administrators, students and parents who have been so flexible as school buildings are temporarily closed for renovation. It has taken a team effort and the energy of all to reach the finish line on this project,” said Senator Pearson.