Delaware State Representative and Chair of the Delaware School District Consolidation Task Force Earl Jaques released the final report of the school district consolidation task force today. The report, seen below, does NOT recommend consolidating school districts based on “findings” that it would not save a substantial amount of money. It does, however, give recommendations regarding shared services among school districts. This report, in my opinion, is missing a TON of information! Continue reading
Tonight is the final meeting of the Delaware School District Consolidation Task Force. The meeting will be held at 5pm at Legislative Hall in Dover, in the House Chamber. This is the big one folks! All the subcommittees issued recommendations last week and the entire task force will be voting on each one. That doesn’t mean they are a done deal. It typically means legislation could be forthcoming to address those recommendations. All the recommendations from each committee appear below. Come down (or up) to Dover and check it out! We will see if this mysterious oddity State Rep. Earl Jaques dropped last month concerning a recommendation to have the State Board of Education get the authorization to have the state takeover “failing” school districts resurfaces. It wasn’t popular when I reported it and many thought Earl slipped on a banana peel or something.
Academic & Student Needs Sub-Committee Recommendations:
Teachers And Staff Subcommittee:
State Representative Earl Jaques introduced House Concurrent Resolution #54 to the House today. This resolution would extend the findings of the School District Consolidation Task Force from January 30th to May 15th this year. The resolution passed unanimously in the House and will go before the Delaware Senate for a voice vote. The prior House Concurrent Resolution which created the task force was HCR #39.
Given the amount of sub-committees involved with this, this comes as no surprise to me. This doesn’t change my prediction of the final recommendations of this task force (of which I am a voting member).
The Delaware School District Consolidation Task Force, as authorized by House Concurrent Resolution #39, is in full swing. Whatever that means! But below is a list of ALL the meetings scheduled to date. No sane person could possibly attend all of them. I’m sure someone will try though. Not this guy! The first sub-committee meeting for the Structure group met last Monday, August 28th. All meetings are open to the public and public comment will be allowed. Whether you agree or not with district consolidation, make your voice heard. I like that the main task force group is utilizing schools from each county. Below the schedule is information the task force wants from YOU!
District Consolidation Task Force
Monday, September 18th, 6:30pm, Woodbridge High School, Bridgeville, DE
Monday, October 16th, 6:30pm, William Penn High School, New Castle, DE
Thursday, November 16th, 6:30pm, Caesar Rodney High School, Camden, DE
Academic & Children Needs Sub-Committee
Wednesday, September 13th, 6:30-8:30pm, Library Conference Room, Dept. of Education, Townsend Bldg., Dover, DE
Monday, October 2nd, 6:30-8:30pm, Georgetown Middle School, Georgetown, DE
Tuesday, November 7th, 6:30-8:30pm, Independence Conference Room, Carvel Bldg., N. French St., Wilmington, DE
Monday, December 4th, 6:30-8:30pm, Cabinet Room, Delaware Dept. of Education, Townsend Bldg., Dover, DE
Thursday, September 7th, 9:00-11:00am, Government Center, 87 Reads Way, New Castle, DE
Thursday, October 5th, 9:00-11:00am, Office of Management and Budget, Haslet Armory, 3rd Floor, Dover, DE
Thursday, November 9th, 4:30-6:30pm, Government Center, 87 Reads Way, New Castle, DE
Thursday, December 7th, 4:30-6:30pm, Office of Management and Budget, Haslet Armory, 3rd Floor, Dover, DE
Met on August 28th
Wednesday, September 27th, 6:30-8:30pm, St. George’s Technical High School, Middletown, DE
Teachers & Staff Sub-Committee
Monday, September 11th, 5:00-7:00pm, Colonial School District offices, 318 E. Basin Rd., New Castle, DE
no other future meetings known as of yet
I will pin this article to the top of the blog and will update meetings as the information becomes available.
As well, State Rep. Earl Jaques is looking for YOUR suggestions on how a district consolidation would take place. Below is a Suggestion Graphic which, should you choose to participate, would need to be sent back by September 11th. This would be up for discussion at the next regular Task Force meeting, on September 18th.
Feel free to slice and dice the State of Delaware any way you want for this. But take it seriously. You never know… your suggestion could become the final outcome! I am a member of the Finance Sub-Committee but will be paying attention to every meeting taking place. Sorry I missed the first Structure Sub-Committee meeting! To find out more information about the Task Force, please go here.
I received an email yesterday for the meeting schedule for the District Consolidation Task Force Finance Sub-Committee. ALL the meetings are in the morning, split between Dover and Wilmington. I get that legislative staffers and the Delaware Department of Education sets all this stuff up, but they are doing a huge disservice to the public by holding these meetings in the mornings. The number one item on the public’s radar is if district consolidation is worth it financially. These are taxpayer dollars at stake here. I volunteered for this committee and while I don’t mind morning meetings, I would rather it was scheduled at a time when the majority of the public can attend.
Here is the schedule. All meetings are on Thursday mornings.
September 7th, 9am to 11am, Government Center, 87 Reads Way, New Castle, DE
October 5th, 9am to 11am, Office of Management and Budget, Hazlet Armory, 3rd Floor, 122 Martin Luther King Blvd., Dover
November 2nd, 9am to 11am, Government Center, 87 Reads Way, New Castle, DE
December 7th, 9am to 11am, Office of Management and Budget, Hazlet Armory, 3rd Floor, 122 Martin Luther King Blvd., Dover
Once again, I have to ask why the person running this sub-committee is NOT an actual member of the task force. I understand Fred Sears has been very active with the Delaware Community Foundation and the Rodel Foundation of Delaware, but why isn’t Mike Jackson with the Office of Management and Budget running this sub-committee? Why are none of these meetings happening in Sussex County? We need the public’s input on this task force. This is a very ominous start for what should be the most transparent of all the sub-committees.
House Concurrent Resolution passed the Delaware Senate a short time ago with amendment by Delaware Senator to take charter schools out of the district consolidation task force’s discussion. A prior amendment in the House from State Rep. Earl Jaques included charter schools in the task force discussion. Oddly enough, Senator Bonini’s amendment didn’t remove a representative from the Delaware Charter Schools Network from the task force.
Senator David Sokola said this bill did not have to be heard in committee but felt it was an important enough topic to have that voice.
Senator Bryan Townsend expressed hope that charters would be a part of the task force’s review. He said the intent of the legislation is a coordinated school system. He recognized Delaware’s unique education system and understood the ideological discussion of Senator Colin Bonini but still felt all Delaware public schools should be part of that system.
Senator Bonini’s amendment passed with 12 yes, 8 no, and 1 absent. For the concurrent resolution, it passed with 17 yes, 3 no, and 1 absent. I imagine it will come back to the House tonight.
Senator Townsend’s Senate Concurrent Resolution #39, requesting an advisory opinion from the Justices of the Delaware Supreme Court on the efficiency of Delaware’s public school system, was defeated in the Delaware Senate with 9 yes, 10 no, 1 not voting, and 1 absent. House Bill #142, dealing with training for School Resource Officers in situations dealing with students with disabilities, passed the Senate with 20 yes and 1 no. The Kim Williams sponsored bill goes to Governor Carney for signature.