Community Forums on Strategic Budget Planning are Set

September 14, 2004
More than 100 community members - representing a broad range of stakeholders - attended the first of three Board of Education community forums on the operating budget and its relationship to the Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) strategic plan.

The forums are part of a new Board process to involve the MCPS community earlier in the development of the budget.

The initial forum, focusing on Goal 1 of the strategic plan - Success for Every Student, was held on September 9. The presentations from community members and conversations in small breakout sessions provided a wealth of useful information that will help in aligning budget planning with the school system's strategic plan.

Community members have an opportunity to attend the second and third forums in the series on September 23 and October 7. Both will be held in the auditorium of the Carver Educational Services Center, 850 Hungerford Drive in Rockville, beginning at 7:00 p.m.

September 23
Goal 2: Provide an Effective Instructional Program

October 7
Goal 3: Strengthen Productive Partnerships for Education
Goal 4: Create a Positive Work Environment in a Self-Renewing Organization

Participants may submit written testimony as well as discuss the goals and initiatives in facilitated breakout sessions. Each group will report out their summary comments, and information from all forums will be compiled, reviewed by the Board of Education, and shared with the public.

The public can participate in several ways:

· Attend the forums. No advance registration is required.
· Post comments on the school system web site.
· Mail comments to the Board of Education at 850 Hungerford Drive, Rockville, MD 20850

The Board of Education also will conduct its regularly scheduled budget hearings on January 13 and 20, 2005, to provide the public with opportunities to comment on the superintendent's recommended budget.

The forums will be videotaped and cablecast on MCPS Channel 34. Air times for the first forum are:

Tuesday, 9/14 @ 10 pm
Wednesday, 9/15 @ 5 pm
Thursday 9/16 @ 2 pm and 10 pm
Friday, 9/17 @ 5 pm and 9 pm

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