Letter Writer Urges 'Yes' Vote in Tuesday's Referendum

Says people will lose jobs, World Language instruction in grades 4 to 6 will be reduced by 50 percent, and other sacrifices will be made if $800K is not restored

Editor's note: The following letter was received about the referendum on Tuesday in which voters will be asked if $800,000 cut from the Board of Education's proposed 2011-12 budget by the Representative Town Meeting should be restored.

As a taxpayer, and parent of two children in public school I have, over the years, spent a great deal of my free time educating myself about the town budget process, particularly as it relates to the school system. I have stayed up late at endless budget meetings, taking away from precious family time and spending a great deal of money in babysitting fees, but I have always felt it was worth it. This past budget season was particularly arduous, and I watched with dismay as first the Board of Selectmen cut Supt. of Schools David Title’s extremely responsible budget by $2 million, a reduction which was then approved by the Board of Finance. I knew that many Representative Town Meeting members had discussed cutting the school budget further (and yes, it is a “cut,” not a “reduction of an increase” – these town bodies cut Dr. Title’s proposed budget for 2011-12), but I hoped it would not come to pass.

At the April 25 RTM meeting, then-First Selectman Ken Flatto, Board of Finance Chairman Tom Flynn and Selectman Jim Walsh all urged the RTM to not make any further reductions. Unfortunately, on May 2nd, the RTM did, by the slimmest of margins – 22-20 in favor of a $800,000 cut – and Dr. Title and the Board of Education were left to decide what they needed to reduce to make up the $2.8 million.

After many meetings and much discussion, staff and program reductions were approved by a majority of the Board of Education. People will lose their jobs, World Language will be reduced by 50 percent for grades 4, 5 and 6, and other sacrifices will be made.

There are many people who believe that the Board of Education budget should have come in with a 0 percent increase, but that was an impossible goal – due to contractual obligations (including a raise for teachers approved by the present RTM), over 100 more students in the system in the coming school year, as well as increases in basic costs of running the school district such as fuel, heating, electricity, etc. – without making serious reductions in the quality of the programs offered to the 10,000+ students in Fairfield Public Schools.

Nothing can bring the school budget back to the level requested by Dr. Title, but the $800,000 cut voted on by the RTM can be reversed if the proposed referendum for June 14 passes, so please vote “Yes.”

Thank you,

Jessica Gerber

Fairfield, CT

Joeseph Biff June 14, 2011 at 06:25 PM
Dudlow, I noticed your post is during the day also, or maybe you're on lunch break from your NAMBLA meeting? You must be at least as old as me since you also know about bozo and Ike. I can't help it if I'm smart and you're not.Everyone now knows old Luddy is an admitted card carrying member of NAMBLA,an organization most folks have forgotten about,except old Ludlow.Check out his older posts.One has him so angry he resorts to profanity.A swearing NAMBLA member!! Right here on our own Patch. And BTW luddy duddy,I shouldn't have said the words weiner and boy in my other post,as I'm sure they were the cause of great titillation for you.
G Hoffman June 14, 2011 at 06:28 PM
Researching the issues and finding facts to arrive at an informed opinion, that's where I've been Snoopington. The drop in property values will be worse if nobody wants to move to Fairfield because of average schools. It's not a disaster scenario, but it would be a shame.
R. Ludlowe June 14, 2011 at 06:47 PM
You're a sick individual. I hope you haven't reproduced in any way.
Fairfield Resident June 14, 2011 at 07:25 PM
Vote Yes on June 14th
Joeseph Biff June 14, 2011 at 10:12 PM
You see Ludlow, It's like this: You say I'm very well educated in lanuage,education,etc. Okay,so be it.For once maybe you're correct. So here then is the difference bewtween you and I. I'm an expert and you're a pervert. Yes,I have reproduced.I'm growing a pod near your house.


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