Testimony of Deborah Grill to the BOE, May 28, 2020

During City Council’s budget hearing last week, President Wilkerson and Dr. Hite stated that any decisions made by the Board in response to cuts in funding and the increased expenses the District will incur as a result of the coronavirus would be student centered. Both of you mentioned that the District had developed goals and guard rails to ensure that students receive the education to which they are entitled.

However, you did not say what exactly those goals and guard rails are, other than to say that the goals will focus on student outcomes and the guard rails on programs necessary to help students achieve those goals. I am assuming that means there will be no cuts to staffing and instructional programs including not just literacy and math, but all other disciplines, as well as behavior and counseling supports.

As the District, and public confidence in the District, has not fully recovered from the Doomsday Budget of 7 years ago, it is now imperative not only that students in neighborhood schools receive the necessary resources to ensure academic success, but that the public be made aware of the rationale you use to make your decisions.

Can you tell us now goals and guard rails you intend to use and when and where will they be published so that the public can become familiar with them?