For the last two months the Colchester School District administration and School Board have been holding Community Conversation sessions at different venues around town. We have been pleased at the turnout averaging 15 to 16 folks at each meeting. The School Board has also held a Saturday session at the Bayside Activity Center as well as a live broadcast last Thursday on LCATV viewable here. (A tip if you use IE as your browser…..be patient.)
What has been most satisfying for our team is to hear what people have to say, hear what they believe about the school system and what they believe are solutions to the State-wide Education Funding dilemma. For their part, the Board and Superintendent have presented facts and data to describe the responsibilities of Vermont School Districts, the human and structural resources required to meet those responsibilities and the costs associated with them. These two-way discussions have been invaluable to everyone in the rooms.
There is a need to continue these dialogues, not only in the run-up to the budget vote on March 3rd, but all year long. People need and value factual information to make balanced and thoughtful decisions about all manner of public policy and government operations. We agree. To that end we are establishing two new communications paths: a new email access at firstname.lastname@example.org and a new Frequently Asked Questions database at www.csdvt.org/InfoFAQ. The two will be linked manually so that questions and answers will be publicly viewable by anyone.
The initial populating of the FAQ will be with questions fielded during the Community Conversation sessions. Questions submitted via email will be posted and responded to in the FAQ as well. We hope that community members will take this opportunity to participate and share their viewpoints and experiences as a part of our learning community.