Archive for Thursday, May 13, 2010

Good job, school board, patrons

Our View Editorial

May 13, 2010

Despite the unpleasant need to cut the Baldwin School District’s budget because of decreased state funding, we’ve been pleased with how the tough chore has been handled by the school board and how the community has responded.

We’ve detailed how the board has exercised due diligence in finding answers for cutting around $300,000. At the first of the year, a fact-finding committee was formed and given the charge of showing what would happen if a laundry list of cuts had to be made.

School board members held a series of public input meetings regarding those cuts, as well as meeting almost weekly for the past several months to discuss those findings. They did their homework.

So did patrons, who were encouraged to read the entire lengthy report the committee had compiled. Those patrons also took advantage of the input and other meetings to voice their concerns.

Never was that more evident than Monday night, when around 90 patrons filled the board’s meeting room to state their case one more time. Of those attending, 37 stood up and told the board what they think. We applaud that. It’s much better than the usual griping after the fact.

There were a multitude of opinions expressed. Many patrons were in agreement on where cuts should and shouldn’t be made, while others were not. The board heard both sides to some delicate issues.

In the end, the legislature passed a budget and a plan to fund it that spared many additional cuts – for now. That doesn’t mean it can’t still happen.

But if it does, the board has the facts in front of them to make more decisions and they’ve heard from the patrons that they serve about how the community feels. Regardless of what happens in the uncertain future, the process here to be ready has worked.

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