Lake George Months after twice suffering a budget defeat at the polls, the Lake George School District Board of Education and school administration is holding a “Community Conversation” Tuesday, Oct. 18 to obtain the public’s views on the school’s future direction.
The event, to be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Lake George High School cafeteria, will be moderated by the regional BOCES staff.
With the purpose of prompting frank, open discussion, the event will be conducted in a roundtable format, avoiding the familiar format of school board meetings in which the Board of Education presides at the front of the room, school Superintendent Patrick Dee said.
“This will be a community forum in which constituent groups will be sitting with us and engage in a sharing of ideas,” he said. “This will be a very valuable exercise, to go to the community and ask citizens, ‘What do you want us to do?’”
Dee said this week that with budgetary constraints — including state mandates and the new 2 percent tax cap — school district resources are limited, and school administrators and board members want to hear what the public values in education, so programs can be prioritized.
He noted that the budgetary pressure includes decreases in state and federal aid, alongside substantial increases in health care premiums, teacher retirement plans, fuel, utilities and special education costs.
He added that the public will be encouraged to identify areas of strength and areas in need of improvement.
“I genuinely believe the community is still supportive and proud of this school district,” he said. “But we’re seeking to hear what staffing and programs our constituents would like to see our school district maintain in the future.”
Childcare services, offered by the student members of Future Business Leaders of America, will be available in the high school library for this event.
The school is asking for those who plan to attend to send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 668-5456 x1207 so school officials can determine appropriate accommodations for the event.
Dee said future Community Conversations of this type are envisioned, perhaps focusing on specific topics.