“Don’t give up — that’s what they want. Keep up the good work. You guys showing up last night was important because it balances out the teacher influence. Keep the troops organized and keep coming to the meetings. thank you for what you do — it makes a difference.”
That’s what school board member Roger Showalter sent to the head of this year’s anti-school group, which is agitating for a “no” vote on next year’s school budget, regardless of what’s in it. He wrote that because she left the last budget study session feeling defeated and outnumbered.
We school supporters must keep the pressure on.
The Clarence school board has added a fourth budget study session in order to discuss and hear your input regarding what the district does with increased state aid. The next budget workshop will take place on Monday April 13th at 7pm at the high school, and the board will vote on the proposed budget on Monday April 20th at 7pm.
We’d love to see you attend both sessions. Let’s tell the board that Showalter’s “no” crowd don’t get to control the agenda. Let’s fight for our kids, and make sure the district maintains its unique cost-effective excellence. Tell them what matters to you.
At the last budget session, Superintendent Hicks revealed that added state aid will allow the district to raise the levy by only 3.9%, rather than the 4.8% allowed by the cap, and add back as many as 7 people lost during the recent layoffs and firings. That’s a good start.
But the school opponents weren’t satisfied – they have pledged to vote no on any school budget unless it contains no increase in the levy. They were there, vilifying teachers, insulting students, and dismissing parent concerns.
But we were there, too. The naysayers were outnumbered, and not by the teachers’ union, but by regular people like you.
As it turns out, state aid is expected to rise next year from original estimates of $250,000 to something closer to $1,000,000. The district should use this to restore lost personnel and programs.
School opponents say, “when is enough enough”? Don’t let them fool you – the gap elimination adjustment is still in place, and Albany is shortchanging Clarence’s state aid by $1.8 million.
Rumor has it that Showalter will not agree to add back more personnel. It’s incumbent on taxpayers who support our schools to tell the board what the district, and our students, need.
Please attend both meetings – April 13th at 7pm and April 20th at 7pm, and consider helping our effort by contributing via our PayPal Link.
Tell your friends and followers on social media about all the good things happening in the Clarence school district, and use the hashtag #ClarenceYES!
Get Ready to Vote!
Students: Anyone who turns 18 years of age on or before May 19, 2015 is eligible to vote, provided they have been a resident of the town of Clarence for the preceding 30 days.
If you turn 18 on or before May 19th, you can vote in the school election even if you’re not registered. Bring photo ID with your address, and you can sign an affidavit at the polling place.
Absentee Information: If you’re a recent grad with a permanent address in Clarence, or if you’re going to be out of town for any reason on May 19th, you can apply for an absentee ballot right now at this link.
If you’re currently attending Clarence High School and want to get involved with this year’s effort to get out the “yes” vote, please send an email here to find out how you can help.
Finally, if you haven’t already, please sign up for our newsletter and keep up to date with this year’s budget battle.