Tom Ferris, Chairman, Board of Education welcomed everyone and advised that the purpose of the Round Table meeting is to receive suggestions regarding the 2011/2012 Budget. He suggested that the public and district administration form one large group at one table for the evening. There were 7 community members in total.
The following four issues were discussed: 1) Implications of reducing the Board of Education from nine trustees to seven.
2) Need for additional learning assistance support in the classroom.
3) The cost of a district-wide Wi-Fi plan.
4) Need to advocate for additional educational funding.
Chair Ferris thanked all participants attending the Round Table meeting and stated that the next public budget meeting will be held on Wednesday, March 30, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. at the Board Office located at 556 Boleskine Road. The purpose of this meeting is for Administration to present the proposed 2011/2012 Budget to the Board of Education.
Two parents shared their concerns with board members and administrators at the meeting.
Stacey Burnett shares her child's story here:
Kids with learning disabilities are not receiving the proper support. The funding cuts are at the expense of the children, they are the ones who are affected. Some days my son will just shut down in the afternoon because he is so overwhelmed. School should not be a place where he feels like a failure. There needs to be more funding provided so there is a full time learning assistant and proper support. We have a tutor for Hayden at an expense of over $4,000.00. We want to make sure he has every opportunity and we don’t want him to become one of the statistics and drop out of school. He was on a wait list for a private school and a spot became available so we have transferred him. Unfortunately he could not get the support he needed in the public school system.