Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Superintendent Dassau Threatens Budget Committee

Superintendent Ken Dassau has sent a letter to the Budget Committee condemning their cuts to the School Budget and threatening legal action. He's upset that the Budget Committee has diligently done it's job of working for the taxpayers that elected them to office, cutting 2.3 million dollars from the School's bloated top heavy budget. It is evident by their report that working with an expert in the field, they went line item by line item and cut where they felt would least likely hurt the education of our students. Reading over Superintendent Dassau's  response to the committee's hard work, we find that he isn't being very truthful in his statements and encourage people to look at the numbers and decide for themselves . While doing so remember the report on education in the Keene Sentinel that reported our middle school teachers are a non-performing asset.  Test scores at Keene indicate that they are not adequately  doing their jobs  in  grades 6-8. 
Mr. Dassau also brings up the matter of the 10% rule and accuses the Budget Committee of deliberately using the rule to cut the School budget by 20%, he's wrong, they did no such thing. 

 We should be asking him just how much "extra" the School Board has been adding to their budget each year, 10%, 20% more? Why they don't return ALL of the surplus budget money to the town every year ?  Why they overspent their budget last year,  using the excuse, "it was unforeseeable", c'mon the Business manager should have known the cash position and encumbered the money!  These are after all intelligent people ... or are they?

 In our opinion, it’s all smoke and mirrors.

We question whether they will they do it again this year?   State law says it is illegal to put this overage in the budget to make up for the shortfall; exactly what they are trying to do.

Below is the Budget Committee's proposal:

and the Admin's response letter:


truly disgusted with the whole mess said...

Why do we always have to come here to find the truth and get the real answers? Why is it so hard for our elected officials, people we rely on to do what's best for all of us, to tell us the truth and give us all of the real facts? And this include those of you responsible for teaching our kids right and wrong, what in hell is wrong with the lot of you?

My Opinion said...

The SAU and the school board have been holding us, the taxpayer, hostage for years. Time to hold people like superintendent Dassau accountable. They inflate there budget and then do there best to spend it all. To bad so many of us don't trust the people we pay to educate and guide our children. Hope the budget committee doesn't fold on this.

Anonymous said...

I agree that the administrative costs are out of control...but this proposed budget by the budget committee is out of conrtol too!

1.By federal law you must have SPED services.
2. 14 classroom teachers!!! I don't want my kids in classes that are that large... and we will be paying to send these kids to other schools of the parents choice when we can't meet the expecatations of an adequate education.

We need to find a balance between what is needed and what is right for the children of this town. Nobody liked their tax bill, but we must educate the next generation and this proposal is not going to do it! The budget committee needs to come up with something reasonable for us voters to vote on...or we will be having the 11 million default budget! This proposal is too over the top! (And I'm one that thinks the administrative costs are too high)

Anonymous said...

Did you actually look at where the cuts are? You sound just like that Dassau in your little rant. At most there may be 25 or so kids in a class about the same amount when I went to school so what's the worry/ As for special education, their budget is so overblown with extras that I for one am glad the budget committee has done what it's trying to do and isn't that what we elected them for, to keep the budgets under control so as not to put us all in the poor house? Sounds to me that this guy is all bluster and is only worrying about his pockets, not ours or anything to do with our kids.

Anonymous said...

Food for thought. What would Dassau do if the voting body at the deliberative session decided on it's own, a large cut? Take away the people's right to vote, as the governing body? Some might view his tactics as a form of voter intimidation. Someone must have a short memory. There is still another BC meeting to discuss the school budget next week. A work in progress, as the budget isn't finalized until it is signed.

Anonymous said...

What is wrong with an elementary school with self-contained class rooms? At least we would know what information our students are lacking when they go to Keene High?
Perhaps the board and school should remember that all SPED students need to be placed in the least restrictive environment. Also, a teacher mentioned at the budget session that we should renegotiate with Keene as all of our students do not need a 1 on 1 aide.

Think about it people a lot of this stuff could be renegotiated or sent out for bid. What ever happened to encumbering money? The first rule of thumb for a business.
Just remember that our students deserve more than smoke and mirrors.

Anonymous said...

Who is going to pay for this legal action? Is Mr. Dassau and the school board or are they once again going to stuff it to the taxpayers? Nice going board, there will be no money for any education for any students. Try not to hold us hostage any more. Perhaps you should find a new leader as his comment of "people lose their homes" every day just grates on all of us.

intimidation anyone said...

Mr.Dassau the over $100,000 a year bully made the Keene sentinel today. Any of you Winchester taxpayers making that kind of money?

Anonymous said...

Actually with 14 teachers cut that would average one teacher per grade approx so there would be 36 to 60 kids in a class.

Anonymous said...

Blame Colleen Duquette and Kevan Whippie for selling us on the idea the tax payers will save a lot of money by starting our own SAU. What a joke. It was a well planned scheme to screw the tax payers while protecting their friends all to get the teachers union contract passed.

Maybe next year with less money for sped children Cheshire County Foster Parent Coordinator Colleen Duquette will not be able to place as many foster children with special needs in Winchester. Save money by booting his a$$ off he school board. Talk about a conflict of interest. Kevan Whippie wants to follow in his Uncle Ted Whippie foot steps, Kevan is so bright his father called him Sonny.

Anonymous said...

There were several BC members on record talking about the 10% rule. Not good for them. I think they will make Dr.Dassaus case under oath.

Anonymous said...

That is not true, I was there and can remember that there was only one passing comment about the 10% rule that was made by member Rick Horton and that was in answer to one of MR Dassau's disparaging remarks to the budget committee. I recorded that meeting and several of the others and that one time was the only time I can recall ever hearing anything regarding that rule mentioned. There are written records also that will prove this fact. You probably work for the school or your spouse does and that is why you are posting untruths in an attempt to sway others. Don't you think others can see right through you?

Dear Mr. Dassau said...

Dear School Board -

Did you have a job interview for the Administrative positions? If not, WHY? Who negotiated their salaries? Who exactly is in charge? Why do we bother with a School Board then?

We recommend that you contact Hinsdale, and see what kind of contract they would consider!

We also recommend that you contact the SPECIAL ED schools that you are sending (a plethera of) children to and negotiate a lower contract with them. Suggest that they CUT out all field trips. If the "regular" kids aren't allowed field trips due to a tight budget, then it is not unreasonable to ask that they discontinue the WEEKLY field trips to the SKI AREA!

Wouldn't it be great if we could be rewarded with skiing because of our bad behavior?