Fog

Gonzales’ statement on the Village

Published: Wednesday, March 26, 2014 9:50 a.m. CDT

As many of you know, Clarke Community School District works in partnership with the Village to provide early childhood education for children from our community and surrounding areas.

The Village and the district are two separate entities and there are two governing boards that make decisions that affect operations and management of the Village and the district preschool and transitional kindergarten programs.

So, what does that mean? What this means is that while we appear to be one organization, we are actually two. The district leases space and is billed from the Village for operations and educational services provided by Village employees.

Upon examination of our fiscal practices, we have discovered that there are changes that need to be made so that we are in compliance with state statute and rule.

Basically, we are law bound to make some changes. Because we are constitutionally barred from using statewide preschool and K-12 funds to support a private enterprise, the district is only allowed to pay for services for our 3-year-old special education students, 4-year-old preschool and transitional kindergarten programs; this will go in effect April 1, 2014.

The Village will make fiduciary decisions regarding provision of 3-year-old preschool services for the remainder of the school year— this will affect approximately 20 students and several Village employees.

While we enjoy and appreciate the partnership that exists between the Village and the district, it is our responsibility to respond legally and ethically to the new information we have received from the state and our district’s legal services.

We remain committed to continuing our partnership with the Village and it is our desire to continue to work with the Village to provide excellent early childhood educational opportunities for our kids in the future.

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