Board of Education Operating Budget Hearings Tomorrow, January 17

A message from your MCCPTA Richard Montgomery Cluster Coordinators:

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Hello Richard Montgomery Cluster Families & Staff:

This Thursday evening, January 17th, your Montgomery County Council of PTAs Cluster Coordinator, Jennifer Young, will be providing testimony on behalf of the PTAs and PTSAs of the RM Cluster at the Operating Budget Hearings before the Board of Education.  Our testimony is built on feedback you have provided to your PTA leadership this year as well as in the last couple of years.  The hearing is at the MCPS Carver Educational Services Center Auditorium, 850 Hungerford Avenue, Rockville beginning at 7pm.  The agenda and testimony times for the hearing will be released on Thursday afternoon, so we do not yet know exactly when Jennifer is scheduled, but we are in the first group.

We know Thursday evening is a busy time at many of our cluster schools.  We hope to see as many of you as possible at the hearings.  Please consider wearing spirit wear from your school or carrying a small (8-1/2 x 11) sign with the name of your PTA or “RM Cluster” on it.  It’s always nice for the person providing the testimony to be able to see supporters in the audience and for the BOE members to see you taking the time to demonstrate your interest in how they allocate school funding.

While this is not a circumstance where we believe turning out large numbers of our families and staff at the hearing will be necessary, we would still like to see our RM families there to show support for education funding and our PTA operating budget priorities!  At last week’s hearing when other clusters testified, the hearing room was quite empty of families.  This may be because the Superintendent’s Recommended Operating Budget has not been a controversial one for our PTAs, but it certainly has been among other constituencies that receive county funding.  The push among those constituencies has been not only to prevent any increase in MCPS funding–even increases tied to increased enrollment–but to reduce MCPS funding as a percentage of county funding.  We hope if you are not able to make it to the BOE hearings on Thursday, you will turn out in VERY large numbers for the County Council Operating Budget and CIP Hearings in February, dates still tba by the County Council.

On Thursday, please check the BOE web page at www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/boe/meetings/#calendar for the agenda, to find the time for RM testimony.  (Please note that these hearings can run a little ahead or behind, so plan about 10 minutes on either side of that time.)

For more information about the Superintendent’s Recommended Operating Budget, please go to:
http://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/budget/

For more information about the MCCPTA Operating Budget Priorities, written with input provided by all local PTA representatives to MCCPTA, including your PTA president and MCCPTA delegates, and voted and approved by that body, please go to:
http://www.mccpta.org/Operating_Budget.html

As you review the Operating Budget, please continue to provide your feedback to your PTA leaders, as we will be working with them to bring our Cluster’s concerns to the County Council and urge all of you to do so as well.

Thank you,
Cheryl Peirce
Jennifer Young
Cheryl Moss Herman
MCCPTA RM Cluster Coordinators

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