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Dayton Public Schools Town Hall Meetings Continue

The Dayton Public School District held another town hall meeting Monday night at Westwood Elementary. It’s the latest in a series of gatherings aimed at finding ways to push more money into the classroom by trimming other expenses.  

About two-thirds of the current $193 million budget is spent on teacher salaries and curriculum, but DPS officials say they can do better. Parents have offered up some ideas, and there have been consistent themes: reduce central office staff, which currently costs the district $4 million annually, and use transportation funds more wisely.

DPS spends almost $15 million each year to transport 11,000 kids within the district and to charter and parochial schools. Denise Gilmore suggested the district consider outsourcing buses. Her daughter’s bus has been a no-show too often.

“And so as a working parent, what do you do? There’s a reason why she’s signed up to ride the bus. The transportation is required. So it’s just been going on for so long and there hasn’t been a resolution that I’ve seen. And it isn’t every day, but last week it was every day,” Gilmore said.

Dayton Public Schools Superintendent Lori Ward says she’ll bring parents suggestions to the next school board meeting, which is March 17.

The next town hall meeting will take place from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. on March 19, at Wright Brothers PreK-8 School.