My husband and I moved to Gainesville in the early 1990s so he could take a position teaching at Brenau University. While our daughter did not move here with us, we have always been interested in the educational community in Gainesville. Of particular interest are the opportunities available here, which are considerable considering the fact Gainesville is not a major metropolis but still a vibrant and exciting town in which to live. Neither of us is a Southerner by birth but here is where we intend to stay as “damn Yankees.”
I have watched the controversy developing over the Enota Elementary School and its extensive garden. A few weeks ago, my husband and I were given a full tour of the garden by Mark Fockele, a knowledgeable professional gardener and landscaper with a prosperous business who has been involved in the actual planning and planting of this garden and its wonderful irrigation system, which may be quite necessary this year with the current drought.
I find it amazing the school board thinks destroying a learning experience as well as a pleasant and natural space for students and adults alike would be a worthwhile project. Schools from elementary up through high school could make field trips here to learn all about different plants and, especially, the intricate irrigation system.
The idea that many plants could be “uprooted” and “moved” for the duration of the construction of a new school, and then replanted, is laughable. Obviously, whoever made that suggestion has not toured the garden and inspected the size of most of the plants located there.
Please honor the desires of a large number of the local community — and what is a school for but a community? — who have expressed the need for new architectural plans to be explored which will not destroy a vital and living area. The students and teachers and anybody associated with education will be better for the rethinking process.
Linden H Gaspar