MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. – After hosting their first successful Board President Saturday Conference last month, Mount Vernon schools officials are set to host the follow-up on Saturday, Nov. 8, when they will discuss more issues facing the city and its school district.
Since taking over for Judith Johnson earlier this year, new Superintendent Kenneth Hamilton has teamed with the Board of Education in an effort to regain the city’s trust and begin building ties between the community and the much-maligned school district.
In September, school board President Elias Gootzeit announced that the district would host a series of weekend conferences, once or twice a month, when members of the community and officials with the district could discuss the issues Mount Vernon faces.
According to Gootzeit, the conferences provide the district with a unique opportunity to interact with the entire community to confer about what problems plague the city and how they can best go about fixing them.
“These conferences are an opportunity to engage our community and begin important conversations that will address some of the inequalities that students and residents of Mount Vernon experience in their day-to-day lives,” he said.
Saturday’s conference will mark the beginning of the budget committee, including a review of the school district’s independent audit. This month’s conference will kick off at 11 a.m. at Graham Elementary School. The board also added a second conference on Dec. 6 in the Longfellow Elementary School auditorium to discuss the district’s strategic plan.
Other planned conferences include:
- Dec. 20: Second annual school district funding fairness conference.
- Jan. 17: Decriminalizing parenting behavior.
- Feb. 28 : Should legal resident aliens have a right to vote in Mount Vernon school district elections?
- March 14 : Dr. Seuss' Birthday: ‘Horton Hears a Who?’ Reader’s Theatre.
- April 18 : Budget presentation.
- May 16: Budget presentation and school board debate, which will be chaired by the PTA Council.
- June 19: Who owns the public schools?
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