Chariho School Parents’ Forum

January 3, 2007

“Program Supports” on the rise

Filed under: Budget,Chariho,Hopkinton — Editor @ 9:02 pm

Another statistic reported by the EOC in last night’s HTC meeting, is the amount of money spent on “program supports.”  “Program supports” are for therapists, psychologist, evaluation, personal attendants, social workers and program management.  This information comes from the In$ight Report, a report the Chariho administration does believe is accurate. 

The point highlighted at the HTC meeting is the dramatic increase at Ashaway, an increase of nearly 400% from the previous year. 

I have been told that all pre-K special needs students throughout the district were sent to Ashaway in 2005 (they have since been moved to another school).  I do not know how many pre-K students are classified as special needs, but there are a total of 51 pre-K students reported in the 2006 enrollment figures (with 1 located at a charter school).




  1. You’ve nailed it…and are we paying for Pre-K schooling? When did this happen?

    Over the Christmas break I discussed the need for psychologists in school with some family members who work in education. One family member in particular is very hard core in his support for the direction of public education. Even in his case he could not justify the value of school psychologists. He did put up a token defense, but unlike other area of disagreements, he only made a half-hearted attempt which told me that there isn’t really a legitimate reason we are spending so much money on “program support” positions.

    Comment by Curious Resident — January 3, 2007 @ 10:17 pm | Reply

  2. I’m not sure what the increase is from, but have asked and will be provided with the information (Chariho has never denied me access to information).

    But if I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a hundred times. The best (and perhaps only) way to make changes is to get involved. A good place to start would be contacting your representative and senator. You can find that person here
    Fill out the “View general voter information” form and it will provide the contact info.

    A rep told me once that if he gets 6 phone calls on an issue, that’s a lot and he takes notice. It doesn’t take that many to make a difference it just takes effort. That being said, this is a very difficult issue, one with very strong lobbyist (those who represent the groups in question). So don’t get discouraged. Rome wasn’t built in a day.

    Comment by cspf — January 5, 2007 @ 11:14 am | Reply

  3. I wrote to State and Federal politicians for many years. I’ve had letters in USA Today, Parenting magazine, and too many in local newspapers to count. For the most part not about education (although I did influence Julia Steiny and she wrote a column based on some information I provided to her). I gave up on the strategy several years ago and my current tactic is to advocate for as much local control as possible.

    A letter or phone call to Bill Felkner might get me somewhere, but at the State and Federal level, the politicians know that as long as they get enough special interest support, then they have no worries. In the Northeast, you can forget making any headway if you have a conservative slant because politicians here race to the left as that is what wins them elections. I hate to be a pessimist, but to advance a conservative idea around here, the best bet is local control where commonsense and logic have a greater chance of winning out.

    I’m not looking to build Rome, but I am tired of watching all the fiddling as Rome burns.

    Comment by Curious Resident — January 5, 2007 @ 4:45 pm | Reply

  4. CR, the Steiny article wasn’t the one linked in the “compelling case for K-8” post was it? Good stuff if it was (although I’m sure it was good regardless).

    As for volunteering for the building committee, if you can think of anyone else that may have the time, please ask them. I’m working on some leads myself.

    Comment by cspf — January 5, 2007 @ 6:24 pm | Reply

  5. No…I’m going back several years with my input to Ms. Steiny. If I recall correctly, it was about the impact of two parent involvement on academic success. I urged her to consider the importance of two parents and she ended up writing an article emphasizing parents as the key education determinate (versus poverty, race, gender and all the other nonsense that is used to excuse poor performance…the correlation between Father-absence and just about every juvenile problem is amazingly predictive).

    Unfortunately, I do not know the mindset of too many Hopkinton residents, and I would hesitate to recommend any person for the committee without knowing where they stood on education issues. My neighbors, who I respect very much as parents, think we can’t spend enough money in the school system. For them, and too many parents, they don’t seem to understand that throwing money at the schools has little to do with successful education.

    As for me, my work schedule pretty much limits my free time to weekends. Some of that time is already committed to local youth programs, so as much as I’d like to be active, unless there is a committee that only meets Saturday evenings, I’m pretty much out of the picture. At this point, I try to be thought provoking on the Hopkinton Speaks board and I hope people in decision making positions will consider my point of view. The best I can offer for now.

    Comment by Curious Resident — January 5, 2007 @ 9:40 pm | Reply

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