Response To Written Testimony

Here find information which, point by point, refutes testimony submitted by Abby Dolliver ‘71, Superintendent of Schools - Norwich, Sally Keating ‘70, Superintendent of Schools - Lisbon, and Dianna R. Wentzell, Commissioner of Education, in SUPPORT of Senate Bill 786 (§11 and 12) mandating public representation on NFA’s private Board of Trustees.

Abby Dolliver '71 - Superintendent of Schools, Norwich, CT
Read written testimony - Education Committee Public Hearing - Monday, March 6, 2017

Sally Keating '70 - Superintendent of Schools, Lisbon, CT
Read written testimony - Education Committee Public Hearing - Monday, March 6, 2017

Dianna Wentzell - Commissioner of Education, State of Connecticut
Read written testimony - Education Committee Public Hearing - Monday, March 6, 2017
Watch video testimony- Education Committee Public Hearing - Monday, March 6, 2017

TRANSPARENCY

Master Agreement - 5-year Master Agreement (July 1, 2015 – June 30, 2020) with tuition agreement in first three years.

Negotiated between NFA’s Board of Trustees (BOT) Chairman Attorney Ted Phillips '74, Lisbon Board of Education (BOE) Chairman Randy Baah '65, selected by the 8 Partner Districts to negotiate on their behalf.

Includes the following relevant provisions:

  • Dispute Resolution Procedure (p.5)
  • Noticing Process (p.5)
  • Non-renewal terms & conditions (p.4)

Bi-Monthly Superintendent Meetings

Noticed & Public Board of Trustees Meetings

Budget Process - Public deliberations, media briefing, briefing to superintendents; agreed upon tuition increase for the first of 5 years. Public Hearing: Each Partner District has public hearing/referenda re budgets; thereby, submitting NFA costs to public scrutiny/input in advance of any budget adoption process in a Partner District.

Annual Audit - BlumShapiro -NFA and the NFA Foundation, Inc. Audit, Form 990, and IRS filings are public documents.

Annual Report - Public, posted electronically, given to media.

ACCOUNTABILITY

Comply with CT general statutes concerning education, including State testing, Professional certification, Graduation credits, number of school days & hours of instruction, etc., Regional School Calendar (LEARN), Evaluation Model & Professional Growth Requirements, etc.

VALUE

NFA average 2016-17 per pupil cost lower than the PreK-8 per pupil expenditure of each Partner District.

NFA average 2016-17 per pupil cost lower than 2014-15 PreK-8 PPE and the 2015-16 NCEP PreK-8 programs in each Partner District.

Read more about The Price Of An NFA Education

Norwich Public Schools receives a $200/per student discount for municipal services (about $300,000 in 2016-17).

NFA Foundation, Inc. provided $5.9 million tuition subsidy over 5 years.

NFA Foundation, Inc. provided additional $1.2 in restricted endowed support over 5 years.

NFA Foundation, Inc. provided $1.2 million in scholarships and awards to 1,149 students over 4 years.

INDEPENDENT GOVERNANCE

Board of Trustees drawn from a larger body of Corporators. By-Laws require 66% to be from Norwich.

Current Board of 12 = 9 from Norwich, 1 from Preston, Franklin, and Canterbury.

Current Board Chair from Norwich & 3 immediate past Board Chairs.

Annual oath to uphold the mission of the Academy.

Sign conflict of interest statement.

By design of the Founders, independence, allows the school to be mission-driven free of political or personal influence, conflict of interest and/or pressure of a Partner District.