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Watch a replay of the Nov. 27 event by clicking on the "play" button above.
You may also view the program in its entirety on Chanel 16 throughout the next few weeks on Wednesdays and Sundays at 12:00 p.m., Thursdays at 3:00 p.m., and Mondays at 7:30 p.m.
For more information, view the Channel 16 program guide. Please note that the video is 1.28 hrs. and may take a few moments to load on your machine.

Setting the Course...
Community event explores where we are;
where we are going

Nov. 28, 2012—On Tuesday, November 27, GCSD hosted a community conversation to take a closer look at some of the most pressing issues currently facing the school district and education in general. Nearly 50 community members joined school leaders and members of the Board of Education for the event.

Setting the Course: Successfully sailing through today’s education environment” opened with a presentation by Superintendent of Schools Dr. Marie Wiles and Assistant Superintendent for Business Neil Sanders that took a closer look at the current demographics of the school district, including our changing student population, enrollment by building, and local housing and census data. View the PowerPoint presentation (PDF) The presentation also outlined some of state and federal requirements that currently frame the school district's work, including numerous Race To The Top (RTTT) mandates, as well as fiscal challenges that schools are facing such as New York's Gap Elimination Adjustment and the state-wide tax levy cap.

Following the presentation, the audience was then invited to share their questions and concerns with school leaders. Using a moderated "town hall" style, attendees submitted their comments on topics ranging from class size and redistricting to mandates and the cost and impact of increased testing due to RTTT.

During the second half of the evening, participants worked in small groups to further discuss the community’s priorities regarding which direction the district should be going given today's fiscal and educational environment. From parents, teachers, and administrators to retirees and taxpayers with no particular affiliation to the district, participants each shared their unique perspectives on where the district should focus its time, attention, and resources in the years ahead. View the comment summary report from the event (PDF)

The community event concluded with a focus on advocacy and what community members can do to make a difference for their students and their schools. Superintendent Wiles shared an advocacy toolkit filled with information about what effective advocacy looks like as well as how to contact and interact with local elected officials. Download the Advocacy Toolkit (PDF)

Looking ahead
There are two additional community conversation events tentatively scheduled for January 15, 2013 and February 5, 2013. Please save these dates and plan to join us as the conversation moves forward. You can also learn more about many of the issues discussed at the Nov. 27 event by visiting our School Budget News home page.