Ansonia Schools Superintendent Carol Merlone sent the following letter on behalf of the Board of Education Friday morning. Click here to read a previous story with some background.
Dear Residents of Ansonia:
Unfortunately, as you are already aware, a solicitation letter titled “Go the Extra Mile For Ansonia Schools” was included in your annual tax bill. Neither the Board of Education nor the Superintendent ever reviewed the letter or gave the City of Ansonia or its representatives the permission to send this letter out.
While we are not debating the merit or intent behind the letter, it is not the method that we would or could ever use to ask for funds from our residents. As a public school, we cannot directly accept funds from the public unless they are given to us by the City. So while we are appreciative of the support that our residents wish to show for our schools, it must ultimately come from our City.
We believe you currently pay enough in taxes, however your voice was heard last year at budget meetings. The City is attempting to harness your strong, heartfelt petitions of support for public education in Ansonia by soliciting dollars from your personal reserves rather than them giving the Board sufficient funds from collected tax dollars to operate our great schools in the manner many taxpayers have indicated they prefer.
By allocating appropriate funds to education in the first place, the City would be listening to its residents and “going the extra mile for schools”. As a Board of Education, we would then be able to put back several important, but now lost, initiatives.
Once again, we would like all of you to know that this form was not generated or approved by the Board of Education or by any of its employees. While we appreciate the sentiment, it would not be possible for the Board to legally solicit or receive funds in this manner. We also want to thank you for your continued support and for voicing your opinions last year. We need and look forward to that continued support and will continue to do our best in order to provide for all children in Ansonia.
Ansonia Board of Education