Short Spoken Public Hearing Testimony Boothbay’s Repealed and Replaced School Charter
Testimony submitted to be spoken places the charter within the framework of home rule vs state central management of everything
I did my public testimony at the Maine Legislature on the Boothbay School Charter. I was nervous and that did not help my delivery but I was the only one testifying who talked about what is in the school charter other than “we are aligning it with State Law.”, which underscored my own point that the charter is repealing our home rule over our school charter and replacing it with state law.
I was the only person testifying who was not a member of the inner leadership circle who wrote the charter replacement. They all said more or less the same thing- it is just so terrible that since the Charter was first created in 1953, that it has been amended many times- so we dumped it, and aligned it with state law so that will never have to be done again, The state laws have been amended many times as well so maybe we should dump them too? If I were writing a novel or a movie script, I wouldn’t have to change much. It’s surreal.
It is no surprise that there were no other testimonies since the hearing was not publicized and I only knew about it because I figured it out that they had sent it to the Legislature and so I could find it through Maine Bill Search. Then I sent an FOAA request to find out how I could testify.
There were obstacles to presenting my testimony every step of the way- First the fact that the boards would not publicly state where the public could read the new charter, Then, once I was registered, I realized shortly before the hearing that I had not been sent a zoom link, Once I got the zoom link it did not work at first and I had to contact tech. Then the meeting started almost two hours late but there was no explanatory message other than “The meeting will start soon” but I was already in touch with tech, who explained it might be delayed for a long time. Then I was connected and my audio icon displayed and I was on unmute but when it was my turn to speak I could not be heard and right at that moment I had to figure out that there was a third control on Zoom that I have never had to use…