It is herein proposed that a commission of Town citizens be created for the purpose of carrying out an independent review of Woodstock’s education budget.
This commission, composed of three to five Woodstock citizens, should be authorized by the Board of Education (BOE) to carry out their mission independently of the BOE with the exception of the BOE’s cooperation with the commission in exchanging information and providing clarifications as needed by the commission.
Nominations for appointment to this commission should be posted publicly on the internet and in local newspapers as these nominations should be known by the Town citizenry. It should be stipulated that nominees to the commission (1) should have no prior role with the BOE or the Academy including candidacy for election to the BOE or the Board of Trustees of the Academy, (2) should never have run for Town office or appointment to any Town committee, (3) should have some form of higher education combined with sustained experience in a profession, and (4) no commission nominee should have a child entering or coming through the Woodstock school system in the fiscal year 2006-2007 or thereafter. The commission members can be chosen by the BOE or after the BOE selects appropriate nominees, but only if there are many nominees, the final commission members might be elected by the Woodstock electorate based solely on the nominee’s published credentials.
The mandate of this commission should be as follows: (1) To complete a line-by-line review of the proposed BOE budget for the 2006-2007 school year; (2) provide an independent review of reasonable needs of the school system based upon review for the proposed budget; and (3) provide a review of the events that led to a proposed budget that currently exceeds the allowable budget presented by the Board of Finance by about $660,000. To complete its mission, this commission will compile a written report that will be published in a timely fashion on the internet and in local newspapers.There is no set time line for completion of this review. It’s not expected that this review could be completed before the 2006-2007 budget is established.
This proposal is open for discussion and/or re-wording.