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The Transitional Regional School Committee recently announced the educating of Ayer and Shirley middle school students at Shirley Middle School this fall. School regionalization was discussed extensively before the Special Town Meeting on March 6 that formalized sealed regionalization of the school districts.

Finance Committee Chairman Brian Muldoon commented at the committee’s April 14 meeting that the combining of students in Shirley was not discussed at Ayer Tri-Board meetings held in recent months. “I don’t think it was vicious,” Muldoon opined.

“I disagree,” said fellow Committee member Scott Houde, “I think it’s been in the works for some time. It should have been presented to the townspeople.”

“Those middle school students will never come back,” said Houde, clearly irritated, “I agreed to a $500,000 (Shirley) subsidy because they were going to stay in town.”

Turning to the student perspective, “They haven’t told the kids yet,” said Muldoon, “It’s just the rumor mill.”

“They’re using their own funds,” said Muldoon, “I don’t think there’s anything we can do as a Finance Committee.”

— Mary E. Arata