Saturday, July 20, 2024

Democratic Board of Education Members Denounce Republican-Driven Budget Cuts for FY 24-25

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By Lisa Carroll-Fabian
Christopher Cormier
Jill D’Angelo-Powers

The Democratic members of the Board of Education, Lisa Carroll-Fabian, Chris Cormier, and Jill D’Angelo-Powers, express deep concern and disappointment regarding the approval of the FY 24-25 BOE budget by the Republican majority. The approved budget doesn’t reflect the Board of Education’s goals; instead, it mirrors the priorities of the Republican administration. GOP-elected members have forsaken their duty to prioritize our students’ educational opportunities and success in favor of the mayor’s economic demands.

Former Republican Town Council chair Chris Pia, now appointed to the Board of Education Finance Committee by Chair Mike Henrick, directed the presentation of budget scenarios including 5.5%, 4.5%, and 3.5%, despite the professional recommendation of Acting Superintendent Heather Borges and COO Pam Mangini for a 6.69% increase, already reduced from an initial 11.5%. Acting Superintendent Borges complied with requests for 5.5% and 4.5% scenarios but rightfully refused to entertain a 3.5% scenario. Nevertheless, during the February 26th finance meeting, Board Chair Henrick proposed a 3.27% budget, severely undercutting our schools’ resources and staff.

This decision by the Republicans is unacceptable and undermines the educational foundation of our community. Our students deserve better, and we must ensure they have the resources necessary for success. Our responsibility as the Board of Education is to prioritize educational needs and advocate for a budget that supports our schools adequately.

Lisa Carroll-Fabian, Chris Cormier, and Jill D’Angelo-Powers, the Democratic members of the BOE, stand firm in their commitment to providing the best education for all students. We vehemently oppose these detrimental budget cuts and will continue to advocate for a budget that invests in our schools and empowers our students to thrive.

We call on our Republican colleagues to reconsider their priorities and work with us to ensure the long-term success of our schools and students. Our children deserve nothing less.

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