Just look at Region One’s administration, and then read this story!!! Malloy said he’d like to ultimately see fewer school administrators. “We’re paying these folks beaucoup money,’’ he said. “I’ve looked at some of the salaries. You’ve got some superintendents of some very small districts making as much money as superintendents of big districts. Reply

From the Associated Press

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s proposal to encourage small Connecticut school districts to regionalize or else risk losing some state aid is raising concerns among some
local leaders who argue that their towns are being unfairly penalized for just being little.
The legislation, starting fiscal year 2016, cuts state education aid — ranging from about $100 to $500 per student — for school districts with fewer than 1,000 students
and per-student costs that are at least 10 percent higher than the statewide average.
Malloy’s revised $20 billion budget plan sets aside $300,000 to help the districts in the meantime come up with ideas for regional cooperation and efficiency.
The Democratic governor argues that his proposal is a common-sense approach to sharing expenses and reducing burdensome local property taxes, which help cover
the lion’s share of local education costs in many small towns. Officials maintain they’ve already considered regionalization and it doesn’t always make sense.
“School districts already have an incentive to look for ways to consolidate and reduce costs because their budgets are stretched thin,’’ said Betsy Gara, the public
policy director for the Connecticut Council of Small Towns. “To penalize them simply for being a small school doesn’t make sense.’’
Malloy’s proposal was tucked into his sweeping, 163-page public education overhaul bill unveiled last month. It has been largely overshadowed by more high-profile
aspects of the legislation, such as revamping state teacher tenure rules.
In an interview on Friday with The Associated Press, Malloy read off a list of towns across the state he has identified with small student populations and well-paid
school administrators. In Norfolk, for example, he said there are 160 students, grades K-6, complete with a superintendent, principal and school board. Malloy estimated it costs about $19,000 a year to educate each child. “Everyone’s complaining about property taxes and for a lot of the communities that we’re talking about, the biggest expense is education. And I’m trying to generate a discussion about this subject,’’ Malloy said. “What we’re saying is, we’ll give you money, we’re going to give you money to sit down and have some serious discussions about how you save taxpayers money.’’ Image
That’s just reality.’’According to Gian-Carl Casa, undersecretary for legislative affairs at the Office of Policy and Management, the governor’s budget office, there are currently 18 towns that have fewer than 1,000 pupils and spend over 110 percent of the average student expenditure. OPM’s list includes Bridgewater, Canaan, Chaplin, Cornwall, Goshen, Hampton, Kent, Lyme, Morris, Norfolk, North Canaan, Preston, Roxbury, Salisbury, Scotland, Sharon, Warren and Washington.

Was a Housatonic Valley Regional High School teacher suspended? Did the teacher then resign? Was a new teacher hired? Should not the board know at least about the events?! 2

Over the weekend, the regiononereport received information from several anonymous sources that a teacher, a Housatonic High School faculty member, had been suspended.  After some investigation, we found out the following: 1.  The teacher’s classes were covered by Dave Bayersdorfer. 2.  The teacher, who we will leave unnamed, had resigned.  3. A new teacher was hired as of Friday, March 9.

We do not recall hearing ANY of this at the last Region One Board of Education meeting:  not in a report from the Superintendent, not in a report from the Assistant Superintendent, not in a report from the high school Principal, not in a report from the Vice Principal.  Is this not information that should be given by some member of the administration in a report to the Board?

We checked with Region One Board Chair Phil Hart at 12:30 Sunday afternoon, March 18, who told us he has no knowledge of such events.

We confirmed with Dave Bayersdorfer that he did indeed get called in to substitute for a teacher in this time frame.

The more things change, the more they stay the same… Reply

from The Pingpank Report, December 2010

First . . . There will be continued problems if the faculty usurps the high school principal, if the central office usurps the high school administration,  or if the central office works in conjunction with selected members of the faculty to the exclusion of the high school administration.

Second, there will be continued problems if the faculty divisions are not healed or at least minimized. One would assume that the faculty, working with a new high school administration, can lessen those divisions. . .

Third, there needs to be less involvement by the central office in the daily life of the high school [which is exactly what Jack said at the August 16, 2010, meeting, which so offended the superintendent that she wrote that email kicking Jack and the 21st Century group out of the taxpayer-funded conference room].  . .

Fourth. . .Administrators should be aware that not everything that goes on in the central office needs to be kept confidential . . .

Fifth, there are concerns over intimidation by the central office. While the concern is not limited to the assistant superintendent, Ms. Goncalves is as much a lightening rod for opinion and controversy as was the [former] principal. She has been blunt. At times that bluntness has been excessive. Her manner at times can be intimidating and threatening. She should be counseled to moderate her behavior. The power of her office should allow her to give clear and direct guidance without the need for intimidation. There are clearly elements in the region that would like to see Ms. Goncalves leave. This can impair her effectiveness, much like her excessive bluntness has impaired her effectiveness. Whether she can be effective is a matter either for the Boards) to decide, or for time to tell.

In future actions, the central office needs to take care to ensure that the course of action chosen is a proper one, a proper method is used to achieve a proper result, and the proper and accurate justification for the action is given.

Sixth. . .It would be helpful if all could take actions that are in the best interest of the Regional School District, that they act with proper motives, and use proper methods.

From The Litchfield County Times 1

In Region 1, Honor Jack Mahoney by Naming the Building After Him

Published: Thursday, March 08, 2012

Speaking of gratitude, it would seem to us that it is time to honor former Housatonic Valley Regional High School principal Jack Mahoney by naming the new science and technology center on the school’s campus for him. Mr. Mahoney, who died unexpectedly last year, was nearly as dedicated to the school after his retirement as he was during his more than three decades as a teacher and principal there. He had devoted many hours to bringing to fruition the dream of the science and technology center.The center, which will occupy an abandoned and renovated building on the campus, is one of those life-enhancing efforts undertaken by volunteers. It is being largely paid for through grants and private donations and will give aspiring students at the school a place where they can do long-term extracurricular or extra credit projects under the guidance of—you guessed it—volunteer advisors.

But, when the 21st Century Fund, which Mr. Mahoney helped to found to help advance educational experiences at the school, recommended that the center be called the Mahoney-Hewitt Science and Technology Center (Diane Hewitt is another major benefactor of the center), the Region 1 Board of Education postponed the vote for a month, purportedly to give time for public comment.

This provoked an outcry among sensitized residents of Region 1, who believe the delay may result from a disagreement between Mahoney and Superintendent of Schools Patricia Chamberlain stemming from last year’s shake-up at the school. Whether the delay is, or is not, politically motivated, it does raise the question: Why is it so hard to say, “Thanks!”

A letter to the editor in this morning’s Republican-American Reply


Name Region 1 science center for educator Jack Mahoney 

Amy D. Schuchat, Sharon

The Feb. 7 article “Region 1 delays naming science center,” regarding the delay in naming the science-technology center at Housatonic Valley Regional High School, left me disappointed in, and hurt and enraged by, the actions of the Region 1 Board of Education and Superintendent Patricia Chamberlain.

It has been recommended that the building be named in memory of the late Jack Mahoney, a teacher and principal who devoted his life to educating the children of Region 1.

In his later years, there was little that pleased him more than seeing “his” students, and catching up on their lives.

I can verify that Jack remembered, with humor and love, each and every one.

In what turned out to be the last years of Jack’s life, he was intensely passionate about building the science and technology center.

He profoundly believed in public education.

He understood the future of this country lies in educating all its children and providing them with the opportunity to compete in the new worldwide arena, and that science and technology were key. That is why this building was so important to Jack.

Not politics, not intimidation, not mean-spirited insinuation.

All Jack ever believed in was children, and that good education conquered all.

It is apparent to me that this is not the primary motive of many members of the Board of Education and, sadly, the Region 1 administration.

Shame on all of you. 

Aeron Watson, Scott Fellows, and the Superintendent…. Reply

Aeron Watson, Scott Fellows, and the Superintendent …

Our Superintendent, Patricia Chamberlain, chose a letter from Aeron Watson (see below) to be included in a Board Packet that was distributed to board members and the press.  It strains credulity that the Superintendent did not know who Aeron Watson was.  In a court of law, convictions would be overturned, and prosecutors and their employees would be fired if anyone was discovered presenting (planting?) “evidence” like this.  In Region One, apparently, everyone gets a raise, and a hearty “job well done”.  It’s about time that all changes.