The following email which was sent out today is reprinted with permission from Ms. Kelly Johnson, a JeffCo parent:
Remember in November 2012, when Jeffco voters strongly supported a $39 million mill levy override to MAINTAIN Jeffco’s traditions of excellence. This did not bring anything new for Jeffco’s 85,000 students, but did prevent class sizes from growing even larger, 400 additional jobs from being cut, special programs such as instrumental music and specialized educators such as teacher librarians and counselors from being cut, and more. Prior to going to the ballot, the group organizing the campaign, Citizens for Jeffco Schools, met with representatives of Jeffco’s Charter Schools to discuss what the schools would receive should the mill pass. Despite the fact that state law does not require Jeffco Schools to share any mill funds with Charter Schools, all agreed that $100 per student EACH YEAR would be fair. While the mill funds left for the neighborhood and option schools go into the General Fund, the Charter Schools receive their $100 per student directly, annually, to spend however they see fit.
Now, according to budget discussions at Thursday evening Board meeting, the newly elected School Board majority wants to take an additional $7.4 million in mill funds and give it directly to Jeffco’s 15 Charter Schools. That’s more than half a million dollars per school to spend however the boards of those Charter Schools decide. That now leaves less than $32 million of your tax dollars to try to cover the projected $45 million in cuts we fought to avoid in 2012. What will the Board cut to make the budget work? Or, will there be new money from the state to cover the costs? Shouldn’t new money be spent on restoring the things we’d already cut before the mill passed?
Remember, prior to passing the mill levy override in 2012, Jeffco Schools had cut $63 million, two school days, the foreign language requirement to graduate, the variety in electives from which high school students can choose, funding for teacher professional development, teacher-librarians, assistant principals, school secretaries, clinic aides, custodial services, safety programs and funding, and more. Meanwhile, class sizes were on the rise.
I have great concerns that this new School Board majority – not Jeffco Schools – may be about to break at least some of the promises made to you, the voters, back in 2012.
If you have similar concerns, please email the Board at email@example.com and also:
Ken Witt, President – firstname.lastname@example.org
Julie Williams, 1st Vice President – email@example.com
Lesley Dahlkemper, 2nd Vice President – firstname.lastname@example.org
John Newkirk, Secretary – email@example.com
Jill Fellman, Treasurer – firstname.lastname@example.org
This ensures your communications are public record.
Please plan to attend one of the upcoming community engagement meetings on the 2014-2015 district budget. There will be an overview of the budget process, as well as time for small group discussion on the budget.
Monday, March 3, 6:00-7:30 p.m. Standley Lake HS and Evergreen HS
Wednesday March 5, 6:00-7:30 p.m.: Chatfield HS and Arvada West HS
Saturday, March 8, 9:30-11:00 a.m.: Lakewood HS and Dakota Ridge HS
Please share this info, gather friends and attend!!
“The Reformers” showings:
WNW is getting ready to break promises the District made to the taxpayers of Jefferson County. Here is a graphic from the 3A campaign that shows what was promised. They are also preparing to ignore the results of the Budget Survey filled out by more than 13,000 JeffCo residents. What will they do next?
What you can do is go to the Budget Forums and the Board Meeting! Make sure that WNW and everyone else knows that this is being done against the expressed wishes of the people of JeffCo.
Do not let JeffCo become another Douglas County! Go and make your voice heard!