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Liverpool residents present petition, talk LMS at BOE meeting

During the Liverpool Central School District Board of Education meeting on March 28, concerned parents addressed the board with petitions and discussion on the proposed downsizing of Liverpool Middle School.

During the public communications segment of the meeting, a concerned group of parents and teachers from Liverpool Middle School addressed the board about the proposed downsizing of LMS from four "teams" to three to save money during the budget process. The parents stated that downsizing would leave at least five of the recently renovated classrooms vacant, and really only save the district "four tenths of one percent" should the board decide to go ahead with the downsizing.

Sharon Yager, the Liverpool mom that created and led the signing of the petition to remove the FOCUS Academy from the budget presented the board with the 434 signatures she and a group of Liverpool residents collected in only 17 days. She said the second petition, calling for the resignation of the superintendent, Dr. Richard Johns, will be presented to the board in April.

Prior to Yager's presentation of the petition, BOE member F. Joseph Unangst voiced his displeasure with the constant "attacks" on the board and Dr. Johns by Yager.

"It's painful to have to continually deal with the negativity," Unangst said.

Board member David Watson agreed. "Many statements are being made, but nothing's being said about solutions or alternatives," he said.

Also during the meeting, the board was presented with two presentations highlighting some of the more "positive" aspects of the district, including a presentation by the Liverpool High School Task Force and the district's art department.

The task force, created to "foster collaborative partnerships among students, their school and their community," was represented by a group of teachers, guidance counselors and administrators providing an update for the board.

Task force representatives stated that by creating smaller learning communities within Liverpool High School and the Annex, the following goals would be reached:

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