Board of Education Member
All three resolutions approved.
Board of Education Member
All three resolutions approved.
Public comments and questions start at about 25 minutes into the hearing. The question of what happens if the teachers' contract is not ratified came up twice. It was addressed most directly the second time at around 41 minutes or so.
At one point School District Attorney May said: "It's up to the voters to decide whether or not to approve that budget. And after that, then the Board will decide what it has to do."
Assistant Superintendent of Finance Pacella said: "It wouldn't be my recommendation to close a school to try to recover $1.9 million, so again as stated by Counsel, they would go back to the drawing board to find out how we can balance the budget if we don't have that $1.9 million savings." Pacella went on to explain that in the event of two budget vote defeats, a contingent budget would be required, and a school closure would probably be necessary.
Hello everyone. I'm running to be a Member of the Board of Education. To put it briefly, the Newburgh School District BOE needs to focus on what's important: student achievement, fiscal stability, and communication. As a BOE Member I will work to see that these topics are addressed more often, in a more timely manner, and more effectively.
As part of the application process with the NECSD the district requested biographical information. There appears to be no information about the candidates on the NECSD website. Here is some brief bio information about me. Also, here is a letter from me which the Sentinel published this week.
Thank you for your continued interest in the Newburgh School District. I strongly encourage all district residents to vote for the BOE candidate or candidates of your choice on May 21. You have the option of voting for 0, 1, 2 or 3.
There are seven candidates for the Newburgh School District Board of Education on the ballot for the May 21, 2013 Budget Vote and Election. Here they are in the order they will be on the ballot:
|John Eliadis||HOH parent and active volunteer.|
|Eric Motley||A parent in the district. Has run before.|
|R. Andrew Johnston||That's me. Will post more on this.|
|Susan Prokosch||Incumbent. Served since 2010.|
|Runston T. Lewis||Incumbent. Served many years on BOE.|
|Judith A. McAfee||Incumbent. On BOE since May 2007.|
|Nathan F. Vesley||Served on BOE 2009-2012.|
As I've done in past years, I'm happy to post candidate letters or links to candidate info websites.
I believe the Mid Hudson Times is working on an article for next week. They make the effort to get some information to the public about the candidates every year. It is excellent of them to do that.
Newburgh Teachers' Association members are voting today on the newly proposed contract. A trove of information about the contract is available at the NTA website. Eleven different contract related documents are linked at this page.
The proposed 2013-2014 NECSD Budget depends upon this new contract.
Noted on the NECSD Budget Page:
A Public Hearing on the Budget has been scheduled for Monday, May 13, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. in the Board of Education/Library Complex Auditorium, 124 Grand Street.
Videos are up for the April 23 BOE Workshop and the April 30 Newburgh School District BOE meeting. There is also an excerpt of comments by NTA President Plichta at the April 30 meeting.
At the Newburgh School District Special meeting this evening, Board President Fucheck and Superintendent Pizzo credited successful negotations with the Newburgh Teachers' Association with enabling a 2013-2014 budget which will not require any school closures and will include the current full day kindergarten program.
The Board agreed on school district and library budget proposals. No numbers were mentioned at the meeting, but those details should be available soon.
Video of the meeting is available on YouTube.
Among the Agenda Items for presentation at the Newburgh School District workshop meeting that will follow the Special Budget Meeting tonight is Resolution 043013L in which the Superintendent of Schools recommends that Matteo Doddo be appointed to the position of Executive High School Principal at NFA effective July 1. Also on the agenda, Resolution 043013M would appoint Charles R. Thomas to be Director of Newburgh Free Library.
There was a special meeting of the Newburgh School District Board of Education on Monday April 22 at 6PM at the Newburgh Free Academy main campus auditorium. The meeting was almost entirely public speakers commenting three minutes each on the 2013-2014 budget.
In response to the first speaker who challenged the Board about whether they were going to have any public discussion about the difficult choices to be made, Board President Fucheck said "due to ongoing contract negotiations we will not be taking final consensus and having final discussion on the last three remaining items from the agenda from last week. We cannot jeopardize our negotiations that are ongoing..." The remaining items are reducing Kindergarten to half-day, or closing a school: Balmville, Horizons, or Vails Gate.
Video of the meeting is available on YouTube.
The special meeting today, Tuesday April 23 has been changed to 6PM to allow for an hour of BOE discussion and a consensus on remaining necessary reductions.
Video of the April 18 Newburgh School District Budget Workshop is available on YouTube.
Here's the bullet point version...
There is a meeting Monday April 22 at 6PM at NFA Main at which there will be time for further public comment.
On Tuesday April 23 at 6:30PM, also at NFA Main there will be a meeting for the BOE to adopt a 2013-2014 budget (no public comment time). That will be followed by the regular April BOE Workshop Meeting.
I've uploaded video of the Newburgh School District Central Compact Committee meeting on April 3. At this meeting there were two speakers. Assistant Superintendent of School Improvement Forgit spoke about strategic plans for the district, which include a new district-wide committee that must be created as part of district improvement efforts required by the NYS Education Department. Mayor Kennedy of the City of Newburgh spoke about the importance of education to Newburgh's future.
Here's a link to the video.
Forgit's presentation begins here.
Kennedy's talk starts here.
According to the district homepage:
Changes to the district calendar will increase instructional time for our students on April 29, 2013 and April 30, 2013. All students are expected to be in session for the entire day on both April 29 and April 30. In addition the last day of school for students is now June 21, 2013.
In other late-breaking schedule news a "BOE Special Metting (Anticipated Excutive Session)" has been scheduled for 5PM at Meadow Hill tomorrow, Thursday April 18--just before the Budget Workshop at 6PM.
Last week there was an excellent letter by NFA teacher Christine McCartney featured in the Washington Post's Answer Sheet blog--Teacher: Why I won't quit despite 'inane' reform.
I applaud the resolution of educators such as Gerald J. Conti and Kris L. Nielsen, for publicly deciding to remove themselves from classroom, especially because they have used their dissent as a platform to spread awareness about current issues in America's education reform. If you haven't come across their widely-read letters of resignation, you can find them here and here, respectively, and they are worth the read. After having spent the past month in Finland, however, gaining new insights from the Finnish education system and having the freedom of time to reflect on my own experiences as a teacher in New York, I have a different kind of letter. Call it my Letter of Resolution. I wrote it because I have had enough. I can't handle any more top-down; I am ready for some bottom-up. I hope you will join me.
The Newburgh School District budget meetings scheduled for the next week or so have all been rescheduled two weeks out...
BOE Budget Workshop Scheduled for April 4 has been rescheduled for April 18 @ Meadow Hill
BOE Special Meeting Scheduled for April 9 has been rescheduled for April 22 @ NFA-Main
BOE Special Meeting Scheduled for April 10 has been rescheduled for April 23 @ BOE/Library Complex
Excerpt from the message from the superintendent posted on the Newburgh School District website:
...the District still faces a deficit of approximately $8.9 million.
On April 4, 2013, the Board of Education will be holding a budget workshop at Meadow Hill School, from 6pm to 8pm. At this time the Board will consider the following recommendations to address the budget shortfall:
* Closing of one of the following elementary schools: Balmville, Horizons-on-the Hudson or Vails Gate,
* Reduction of Full day Kindergarten to half-day Kindergarten,
* Programmatic and staff reductions
As in previous budget workshop sessions there will be 30 minutes allotted for public input on alternate suggestions to reduce the budget gap. Parties interested in speaking should contact the District Clerk, Matthew McCoy, at 845-563-3503 or email@example.com.
An article in the Auburn Citizen linked to a scribd document containing NYS projected school aid for 2013-14 as of March 22. Newburgh is on page 56 of the document; or "PAGE 87" of the run. It looks like the Newburgh School District can anticipate about a one million dollar increase in aid over the January 22 numbers.
|2013-14 ESTIMATED AIDS:||01/22/13||03/22/13|
|FULL DAY K CONVERSION||0||0|
|BOCES + SPECIAL SERVICES||4,471,553||4,464,098|
|HIGH COST EXCESS COST||3,502,098||3,502,098|
|PRIVATE EXCESS COST||2,005,830||2,055,396|
|HARDWARE & TECHNOLOGY||200,604||201,180|
|SOFTWARE, LIBRARY, TEXTBOOK||951,104||954,098|
|TRANSPORTATION INCL SUMMER||10,630,299||10,604,715|
|OPERATING REORG INCENTIVE||0||0|
|CHARTER SCHOOL TRANSITIONAL||0||0|
|HIGH TAX AID||3,485,557||3,600,531|
|SUPPLEMENTAL PUB EXCESS COST||0||0|
|GAP ELIMIN. ADJMT (SA1213)||-11,789,185||-11,789,185|
|GAP ELIMINATION ADJUSTMENT||-9,537,443||-8,920,768|
|BUILDING + BLDG REORG INCENT||10,528,039||10,526,883|
There was a regular monthly Newburgh School District BOE meeting on Tuesday March 19, 2013. The meeting was at Temple Hill Academy. There was an audience of over 200. Video of the meeting is available on YouTube.
The bullet points...
Running for the Board of Education has a few minimal requirements (district resident, not an employee) and you will need to collect 100 signatures on a petition. The District Clerk, Mr. McCoy, can provide you with a packet of information with all the details. According to the NECSD 2013-14 budget page: "Petition forms are to be returned to the District Clerk by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 1, 2013. For additional information, please call Matthew McCoy, District Clerk at 563-3503."
What is a Board member supposed to do? Here are two suggested references:
1) New York State Education Law 2503 states the powers and duties of boards of education.
2) There is a brochure titled "Raising the Bar: A School Board Primer on Student Achievement" which is available as a pdf from the ERIC website. "This guide provides ways in which school board members can lead their school systems to higher levels of student achievement. The text attempts to help board members by equipping them with comprehensive information about the various components of student achievement."
That PDF is temporarily unavailable from ERIC. Here is a copy of Raising the Bar: A School Board Primer... (3.8mb pdf).