A rendering of the proposed prekindergarten through grade 8 school in Mexico shows the front entrance. It is planned for the site of Mountain Valley Middle School at 58 Highland Terrace and nearby Meroby Elementary School at 21 Cross St. Submitted by Harriman Associates

RUMFORD — The second public hearing on building a $91.8 million school in Mexico drew no comments from the more than two dozen people attending Monday night at Mountain Valley High School in Rumford.

Residents of Rumford, Mexico, Roxbury, Buckfield, Sumner, Hartford and Hanover in Regional School Unit 10 will vote Nov. 8 on whether to approve the project.

It will be the second vote on the issue. The first one June 14 was nullified because Mexico’s warrant was posted June 8, one day short of the legally required minimum seven-day notice. The vote then was 938-591.

The school is planned for the site of Mountain Valley Middle School at 58 Highland Terrace and nearby Meroby Elementary School at 21 Cross St. It would replace those schools and Rumford Elementary School and include grades prekindergarten through eight.

It would accommodate up to 1,050 students and serve children with disabilities from birth to 5 years old. Plans include a health clinic in partnership with Rumford Hospital and an early childhood education program run by Region 9 School of Technology staff and students.

About 98% of the cost would be paid by the Maine Department of Education.


At their regular meeting after the hearing, the board of directors were advised by Superintendent Deb Alden that she and board Chairman Greg Buccina of Rumford recently met with Mexico Police Chief Roy Hodson. He told them his department has received a grant for over $100,000 to hire a second school resource officer for schools in Rumford and Mexico, she said.

Rumford Police Officer Doug Maifeld serves as school resource officer at Mountain Valley High and Rumford Elementary schools, both in Rumford, and Meroby Elementary School and Mountain Valley Middle School in Mexico.

“Having one SRO for the four schools has been a challenge,” Alden said Hodson told her. He and Maifeld will give a presentation on the issue at the Dec. 12 board meeting at the high school, she said.

Also at the meeting, Larry Thornton, job specialist for the district’s Jobs for Maine Graduates, and students Jesse Vining, Autumn Pollis and Tyler Skillings talked about new statewide initiatives and those at RSU 10 schools.

JMG partners with public education and private businesses to offer results-driven solutions to ensure all Maine students graduate, attain post-secondary credentials, and pursue meaningful careers.

Mountain Valley High School senior Jesse Vining addresses the Regional School Unit 10 board of directors Monday at Mountain Valley High School in Rumford. Vining participates in Jobs for Maine Graduates. JMG Job Specialist Larry Thornton stands behind him. Marianne Hutchinson/Rumford Falls Times

Vining, a senior, reported on students’ work with Full Plates Full Potential and a $5,000 grant from Full Plates and JMG “to help with food insecurity and improve our knowledge of these (issues).”


Pollis, a junior, and Skillings, a senior, spoke about JMG’s Maine Career Exploration Badge for juniors and seniors. Students participate in 40 hours of a meaningful work experience, Pollis said, and receive $500 for their work at businesses in the communities.

JMG’s workforce liaison for the central region Amy Perrault and Hope Paths program director Kara Boone also spoke.

Thornton expressed his enthusiasm for the JMG programs, saying, “This is groundbreaking stuff” for the students and the community.”

In another matter, Carol Daigle of Mexico, who speaks frequently at board meetings, was advised to email her questions and information about the district’s drug abuse resistance programs to Alden and her questions about social emotional learning to Special Education Coordinator Clarissa Fish.

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