Depew shuts down public input
I had requested to ask questions at the Depew School Board meeting on Wednesday, Feb. 28. This was a very lengthy meeting, as the board came out of executive session at 9:30 p.m., which by itself was a total disregard of the public. Nevertheless, I was number one to speak. I relinquished my time to the two educational presentations. Another person also wanted to speak but was denied and supposedly did not inform the board of her concerns prior to the meeting.
The meeting continued, and a consent agenda containing 20 resolutions went through without a blink of an eye. Diane Benczkowski questioned item 20, and she and Michael Fusani voted ‘no.’
The public forum came whereby residents can ask questions regarding the agenda items, and a person again stood up and asked questions of the board and was harassed by the board president over and over again until she had to sit down. I then thought I would ask the original question that I came to the meeting for, about the proposed new policy and what it may contain to make resident taxpayers and the School Board more pleasant to each other.
I, too, was censured by the School Board president. What I said at that point was not appropriate, but he created the conditions that existed.
Why do we elect a School Board? It was always a way to elect the best residents, whom we could entrust with our money to provide the best education that the district can afford, and that the elected officials were there to perform their duties in that capacity and not outlaw the community from asking questions regarding spending, inappropriate behavior and implementation of new programs, but most of all to set a budget with input from the School Board, many of whom never had any input or wanted to.