Monday, November 16, 2009

Sound off about the school board charter

As many of you may already know, the Legislature’s commission that has been studying what to do about the school board charter will hear recommendations, hold a vote, and render its decision to the Legislature on Thursday, Nov. 19, at the school administration office at 16 Rumford St.

The commission will be deciding one of three options:

1) Not to change things and allow the Legislature to continue to run the school board charter (This option is not likely since most people realize that the Legislature shouldn’t be controlling the school charter and legislative leaders want out of Concord’s business too).

2) Recommend to the Legislature that a charter commission be created to study what to do with the charter (This seems to be favored by those members connected to the school system since it will extend the process into 2011 or 2013 without any changes to the charter).

3) Recommend to the Legislature that a 49B amendment be added to the charter which will give residents the ability to change the charter via initiative petition (This is the proposal put forth by Attorney Chuck Douglas and is supported by some members).

Obviously, option 3 is the best one. But after last Thursday’s meeting, there is clearly some push back from members of the commission about whether or not Concord citizens should be able to control their school board charter via initiative petition. After testifying about this being a civil rights issue, I was grilled for a good 20 minutes by the school board chairwoman, a recently elected school board member, and a cheerleader for the elementary school consolidation project.

I don't have a ton of readers here at Maybe a hundred or so regulars. But, our community really needs you to reach out to commission members and tell them that Yes, we should have an initiative petition process.

Please send notes of concern to State Rep. Rick Watrous at, and he can then pass it on to the commission members. Please do this before Wednesday, Nov. 18.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

We live here. Its our school district for our kids. Why shouldn't the charter belong to the district voters?? Why shouldn't we be able to petition??