D-Y Narrows Plans for New Middle School

YARMOUTH – The Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School District is moving closer to building a new middle school.

At a school committee meeting last week, board chairman Joseph Tierney announced that the new school would be located on land behind Station Avenue Elementary School in South Yarmouth, housing grades 4 through 7.

The new facility would replace both Mattacheese Middle School in Yarmouth and the Nathaniel H. Wixon Innovation School in Dennis.

Dennis Selectman Cleon Turner, a member of the school building subcommittee explained the decision to include both schools in a single project.

“The Mass School building Authority Building Authority which would be funding a significant part, suggested that the committee and the consultants not only look at Mattacheese but look at Wixon as well,” he said.

Members of a building subcommittee have until early March to select between three different design options if they wish to remain eligible for Massachusetts School Building Authority Financing.

As far as what is to be done with the existing facilities once a new one is open, Turner said that’s up to the towns.

“The building committee hasn’t a great concern about what happens to those other buildings,” he explained, “Mattacheese belongs to the town of Yarmouth and Yarmouth rents it to the school district, Wixon belongs to the town of Dennis and Dennis rents it to the school district.”

Tensions remain between the two towns regarding the future of their regionalization agreement, with Yarmouth officials insisting on a more equitable division of school district expenses.

Under the current agreement, costs are determined based on student population from each town. A committee, chaired by Turner, has been established to look into revising the compact but has yet to see much progress according to officials.

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