SC student rep voting takes step forward

By Josh Resnek

The Everett School Committee voted Monday night to back a state legislation giving the right to vote to student representatives serving on city and town school committees in Massachusetts.

The state senate and house of representatives are presently studying the measure and

will likely be voting on such a change that would revolutionize the position of school representatives.

Presently, school representatives, that is, high school students serving side by side on school committees all over the state do not have the right to vote.

”I love the idea. I’m in favor of it,” said Mayor Carlo DeMaria.

“Having a voice is great but having a vote is better,” he added.

School Committee Chair Mike Mangan said he liked the idea but could not yet vote for such a measure.

“I have questions. I don’t know enough about this. No one around us is doing this. So far, Berkshire officials are in support it. I’m not opposed but I believe we need more discussion,” he said.

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$128 million public schools budget ratified unanimously

By Josh Resnek

Everett Public Schools spending in fiscal year (FY) 2024 is set at $128 million, an increase over 2023 spending of almost $20 million dollars.

The schools budget was approved unanimously without much discussion during Monday night’s school committee meeting.

Mayor Carlo DeMaria asked the bulk of the questions about the 2024 budget without any fanfare.

The Everett High School budget topped the ticket – so to speak.

In FY2024, the EHS budget was set at $25 million up from $22 million in 2023.

In FY2024 the Lafayette School is the second most expensive EPS facility to operate.

In FY2024 it will cost $11.7 million for the school as compared with a 2023 cost of $11.3 million.

However, it is the administration of all the public schools which is the most costly item in the new budget.

That cost for FY2024 is $40.7 million as compared with 2023 which came in at $27.1 million.

Custodial managerial salaries have gone from $0 in FY2023 to $300,000 in 2024.

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Monday night’s vote against renewing contract an inevitable fait accompli

School Committeeman Mike Mangan and Superintendent of Schools Priya Tahiliani shown at Monday’s meeting. (Photo by Josh Resnek)

By Josh Resnek

Something that is inevtible cannot be stopped from taking place.

A fait accompli is a thing that has already been decided before those affected hear about it.

In both instances Monday night at the school committee meeting, Superintendent of Schools Priya Tahiliani met her rendezvous with her Everett destiny.

The vote against extending her contract was inevitable and the politics of the situation.

She was basically, unequivocally asked to leave when her contract is up in March of 2024, a fait accompli for the first woman of color to lead the Everett Public Schools.

Going into the meeting she did not have the votes to prevail.

This is one of the harsh realities of of democracy in action in Everett.

Make no mistake, it was democracy in action.

That didn’t make Monday night’s vote fair or just.

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Efforts to drop mayor as voting school committee member go nowhere

By Josh Resnek

Two motions to strip the mayor of his voting presence on the Everett School Committee placed on the agenda Monday night by Council President Mike Marchese went nowhere.

A vote on a suggestion to participate in a Charter change ballot question failed by a 6-3 vote.

Another Marchese motion to strip the mayor of his place on the school committee also failed – not by a vote on the measure.

The motion was returned to its maker where it will die a slow death.

The mayor expressed surprise that these motions were on the agenda.

“In 42 cities and towns 90% of mayors are on the school committee and are the chairperson. This should have been done a long time ago…I don’t believe anyone should have control over school committee members. The mayor as a voting member is for the future of the city. The mayor should be a voting member of the school committee,”the mayor said.

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