Bynum sees proposed Schools Connector trail as beneficial to children’s safety

Whereas Rappahannock County Public Schools “wholeheartedly” supports a proposed footpath linking the elementary and high schools, Piedmont District School Board Member Rachel Bynum says she too can see the trail benefitting the schools and community alike.

In a note to district constituents reminding them of last night’s (Wednesday’s) School Safety Forum at the high school auditorium, during which Superintendent Dr. Shannon Grimsley and sheriff and EMS personnel were to address parents and answer questions, Bynum stated “the trail would provide an alternate exit from school in case of a closure of Rte 211.”

“As it stands, I see the possible trail, if it is built, as largely benefiting the school and community,” wrote Bynum, who was elected to the board earlier this year.

The board member added: “One unexpected thing that came up in public comment at our September meeting was that there are some No Bike Trail people requesting that the School Board rescind the easement for the trail that was approved by the [school] Board last year (before I served on the Board).

“This easement gave no financial commitment (that’s the BOS’s purview) and didn’t agree to any specifics of the path, other than that the Board would have say in its final placement with an eye to safety,” she wrote, adding it was her understanding that a “spur” of the trail leading to the elementary school would be closed during school hours.

Bynum said she is interested in hearing from more constituents about their views on the Schools Connector trail, pointing out that a “majority of No Bike Trail people speaking at the recent forum stated that they like the idea of a trail but not the possibility of spending County money on it, so I’m not clear why some are now asking the Board to rescind the easement. It is odd to see how political this has become.”

The next School Board Meeting is on Tuesday, October 9, at 6:30 p.m. at the high school.

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John McCaslin is the editor of the Rappahannock News. Email him at