Below is the list of resolutions passed by the
RESOLUTION CELEBRATING THE LIFE AND
HONORING THE MEMORY OF DON THOMAS
WHEREAS, on January 21, 2017, the Exeter Township School District lost a dear friend and valued member of our District family in the passing of Don Thomas; and,
WHEREAS, Don joined the staff in the mid-1950’s during the infancy of Exeter as a 1-12 district, and was a key contributor to forming a culture that continues to this day; and,
WHEREAS, in his long history with the Exeter Township school district, Don had a positive influence on so many things. As a teacher, coach and athletic director, he was completely committed to the success of our students, our student-athletes, the school district, and the larger Exeter community; and,
WHEREAS, as a classroom teacher, Don created the same enthusiasm in his students that he nurtured on the athletic field. His classroom techniques were designed to draw even the most shy or reclusive student into the educational experience and created a classroom environment that demanded active participation by all students in a group-learning experience. He emphasized the opportunities our nation provided, humanized the early history of our nation and illustrated the need for each individual to contribute to the continuance of our grand experiment through commitment to the founders' principles. Don emphasized the value of patriotism, loyalty to community and a team spirit that extended to daily life as well as athletics; and,
WHEREAS, Don was instrumental in creating the athletic department structure that allowed development of a varsity sports program to establish the District and its students as a force in interscholastic sports in Berks County and southeast Pennsylvania. He guided and developed our student-athletes in a young football program to its first winning season in 1964 and soon thereafter as champions in the inter-county league; and,
WHEREAS, as a mentor, Don made every effort to utilize his contacts gained through his collegiate athletic experience and his position as athletic director to provide opportunities to Exeter students. In later life, he was instrumental in forming the Alumni organization that continues its efforts to maintain the bonds to the School District and its students with its alumni; and,
WHEREAS, Don’s tireless efforts on behalf of the district earned the respect of so many. He was inducted into Exeter's Sports Hall of Fame for his coaching accomplishments and his many contributions were recognized when the high school stadium was named in his honor; now therefore be it
RESOLVED, that the Exeter Township School District celebrates the memory of our friend, Don Thomas, and expresses its heartfelt condolences to the entire Thomas family.
Approved February 21, 2017
EXETER TOWNSHIP SCHOOL DISTRICT
RESOLUTION NO. 2017-1
OPPOSING THE CONFIRMATION OF BETSY DeVOS
AS SECRETARY OF EDUCATION
WHEREAS, the President-elect has called for the nomination of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education of the United States, a candidate who is a large contributor to Republican political candidates but otherwise lacking any credentials as an educator, any experience in the administration and management of public schools, and demonstrating a pre-disposition towards and long-history of support for charter schools and school voucher programs, which by their very nature eviscerate free and appropriate public education, and enrich the coffers of private companies, therefore be it . . .
RESOLVED, that the Exeter Township Board of School Directors opposes the confirmation of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education and calls upon the incoming United States Senate to stand firm by opposing this nominee until such time as the incoming President’s administration presents a vision and plan which supports and enhances public education in America.
Approved January 17, 2017
EXETER TOWNSHIP SCHOOL DISTRICT
RESOLUTION NO. 2015-2
URGING THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY TO ESTABLISH A NEW FUNDING FORMULA FOR BASIC EDUCATION
WHEREAS,Pennsylvania’s more than 1.8 million public school students deserve the highest quality education; and
WHEREAS, the state’s contribution in funding public education as a percentage of basic instructional expenses has declined from over 50% during the mid 1970’s, to less than 35% today; and, on average, other states contribute 44% of total education funding; and Pennsylvania ranks 47th among the 50 states in the amount of state subsidies allocated to support elementary and secondary education, and ranks 8th in reliance on local taxes; and
WHEREAS, as the state’s share of K-12 education funding decreases while the number of state and federal mandates for public schools steadily increases each year, additional burden is placed on local taxpayers to make up the difference to ensure that our students’ education is not jeopardized; and
WHEREAS, in recent years, basic education funding has been distributed without the benefit of a funding formula, with the lack of a reliable, fair and transparent funding formula resulting in great disparities in how state education funds are distributed to school districts; and
WHEREAS, these inequities effectively harm the ability of school districts to adequately and fairly provide the resources for the different needs of their students, especially those in poverty, those with disabilities, English language learners and other students; and
WHEREAS, the Exeter Township School District supports the development of a system of public school financing that addresses the needs of school districts and students, and establishes a school funding formula that is equitable, adequate, comprehensive and consistent.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Exeter Township School District urges the General Assembly to reinvest its interest in the support of public schools by taking legislative action to establish a formula that is predictable and addresses adequacy and equity for all school districts; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Exeter Township School District will encourage others, including parents, students and district taxpayers, to contact the Pennsylvania General Assembly to convey the importance of establishing a fair and equitable public school funding formula; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a copy of this resolution submitted to the elected senators and representatives of the Exeter Township School District in the General Assembly, and to the Governor of Pennsylvania.
Adopted this 21st day of April, 2015.
Resolution in Support of the Education Funding Lawsuit
Supporting the school districts, the Pennsylvania Association of Rural and Small Schools, the PA NAACP State Conference, and families of individual children in their suit to enforce Pennsylvania’s constitutional guarantee of "a thorough and efficient system of public education," and urging the Pennsylvania General Assembly to provide a fair, adequate and predictable formula that is based on meeting the learning needs of children and reflects the Commonwealth's values.
WHEREAS, Section Fourteen of the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania states that "The General Assembly shall provide for the maintenance and support of a thorough and efficient system of public education to serve the needs of the Commonwealth"; and
WHEREAS, the General Assembly has defined what a thorough education is by identifying educational standards (the standards used in PSSA and Keystone Exams) that all PA students are expected to meet; and WHEREAS, In recognition of this core responsibility, in 2008 the General Assembly established funding targets for each school district, and determined a formula that would allow the Commonwealth to distribute education funds in a way that took into account the specific needs of our state's school districts and their students, to ensure that all students were given the resources needed to succeed academically according to state-mandated standards; and
WHEREAS, the state has failed to ensure that all of Pennsylvania's public school students have access to the resources they will need to meet state standards; and
WHEREAS, Pennsylvania is one of only three states in the United States of America without an objective and transparent formula to distribute education funding; and
WHEREAS, the current way school funding works in PA results in grossly different amounts of money spent on children in different districts, with much less money spent on children in poor districts; and
WHEREAS, This irrational funding disparity violates the Equal Protection Clause of our state constitution because children in low-wealth districts are being denied the opportunity to receive an adequate education, while their peers in high-wealth districts are receiving a high-quality education; and
WHEREAS, This irrational and inadequate funding structure has wreaked havoc on school districts across Pennsylvania and had a devastating impact on students, who have been deprived of integral elements of their education, such as appropriate class sizes, adequate facilities, experienced and effective teachers, nurses, counselors, administrative and support staff, and adequate course offerings and materials; and
WHEREAS, These adverse effects can be acutely felt here in the Exeter Township School District, where our school board has had to make cuts resulting in increased class sizes, elimination of administrative, teaching and support positions, and has needed to increase taxes each year to fund basic education expenses and fulfill an ever-increasing number of state and federal mandates; and
WHEREAS, When the state fails to adequately fund education it puts and unfair and undue responsibility on local taxpayers; now, therefore be it
RESOLVED, That the Exeter Township School District supports the school districts, the Pennsylvania Association of Rural and Small Schools, the NAACP Pennsylvania State Conference, and families of individual children in their snit to enforce Pennsylvania's constitutional guarantee of "a thorough and efficient system of public education," and urges the Pennsylvania General Assembly to provide a fair and predictable formula funded by adequate revenues that reflects the Commonwealth's values.
FURTHER RESOLVED, That a copy of this resolution be presented to the Governor's office, the PA Secretary of Education and to state legislators who represent our school district.
EXETER TOWNSHIP SCHOOL DISTRICT
RESOLUTION NO. 2015-1
BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of School Directors of the Exeter Township School District,
WHEREAS, our nation's future relies on a highquality public education system that prepares all
students for college, careers, citizenship and lifelong learning, strengthening the nation's social
and economic well-being; and
WHEREAS, our nation's school systems have been spending growing amounts of time, money
and energy on high-stakes and standardized testing, in which student performance on standardized tests is used to make major decisions affecting individual students, educators and schools; and
WHEREAS, the over reliance on highstakes and standardized testing in state and federal accountability systems is undermining educational quality and equity in U.S. public schools by hampering educators' efforts to focus on the broad range of learning experiences that promotes the innovation, creativity, problem-solving, collaboration, communication, critical thinking and deep subject-matter knowledge that will allow students to thrive in a democracy and an increasingly global society and economy; and
WHEREAS, it is widely recognized that standardized testing is an inadequate and often unreliable measure of both student learning and educator effectiveness; and
WHEREAS, the over-emphasis on standardized testing has caused considerable collateral damage in too many schools, including narrowing the curriculum, teaching to the test, reducing love of learning, pushing students out of school, driving excellent teachers out of the profession, and undermining school climate; and
WHEREAS, high-stakes standardized testing has negative effects for students from all backgrounds, and especially for low-income students, English language learners, children of color, and those with disabilities;
THEREFORE, let it be resolved that the Exeter Township School District supports locally developed, authentic assessments as drivers of instruction and more time for educators to teach and students to learn;
THEREFORE, let it be resolved that the Exeter Township School District calls on the governor, state legislature and state education boards and administrators to reexamine public school accountability systems in this state, and to develop a system based on multiple forms of evidence that does not require extensive standardized testing, more accurately reflects the broad range of student learning, and is used to support students and improve schools; and
THEREFORE, let it be resolved that the Exeter Township School District calls on the U.S. Congress and Administration to overhaul the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (aka. "No Child Left Behind Act"), reduce the testing mandates, promote multiple forms of evidence of student learning and school quality.
DULY RESOLVED, this 21st day of April, 2015, by the Board of School Directors of Exeter
Township School District, Reading, Pennsylvania, in lawful session duly assembled.