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West Hartford Board of Education to Hold Additional Budget Forums

In addition to the scheduled formal public hearings, members of the West Hartford Board of Education will hold two public forums during this budget season.

By Ronni Newton

The West Hartford Board of Education wants to provide the public with the opportunity to learn about and ask questions about the 2018-2019 budget proposed by Superintendent Tom Moore on March 6, and has scheduled two forums this month.

“Every year, in addition to the official public comment sessions, the Board has tried to get out into the community,” Board Chair Cheryl Greenberg said Tuesday.

Members have done that by going school-to-school, Greenberg said, but the sessions weren’t very well attended. This year there will be two forums, one at King Philip Middle School and another at Duffy Elementary School, to reach a wide audience from all across town.

Greenberg said the informal sessions will begin with an overview and explanation of the budget, and attendees will then be able to ask questions and provide feedback to Board members.

“It’s a casual format,” Greenberg said, without the official public comment restriction of three minutes per person or 21 minutes per topic.

In 2017, because the budget stakes were so high and possible cuts drew so much interest from the public, one large forum was held at Charter Oak International Academy. “We had to be prepared. Everything was on the table,” Greenberg said.

Greenberg said she anticipates this year will be more typical of most budget deliberations. “Not that there won’t be struggles,” she said, but it will be more like years other than 2017.

All are invited to attend the following forums:

Additional scheduled official meetings related to the Board of Education budget include:

  • Board Public Hearing, March 28, Town Hall, 7 p.m.
  • Budget Workshop no. 2, March 28, following Public Hearing
  • Board Budget Adoption, April 3, Town Hall, 7 p.m.
  • Town Council Budget Adoption, April 24, Town Hall, 7 p.m.

The detailed budget is available on the West Hartford Public Schools website here. Suggestions can also be sent by email to [email protected].

For information about the overall Town of West Hartford budget proposed by Town Manager Matt Hart on March 12, click here.

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