Ten Questions for DY Superintendent Woodbury

Superintendent Clams Up - Readers Feel Free to answer for her

For the past two weeks Cape Cod Today has attempted to arrange an interview with Dennis-Yarmouth Regional Schools superintendent Carol Woodbury.

As part of our continuing coverage of education on Cape Cod we have sat down with several school leaders over the past few months to gain a sense of how each is addressing the challenges of the Cape's dwindling population, competition from charters/school choice and to hear their vision for the future.

In more than one case our analysis of the educational landscape was changed significantly by these meetings. Thus far, we have found the superintendents and other school leaders to be an intelligent, insightful and optimistic group. They seem aware of their districts' strengths and also their vulnerabilities.

On October 19th, we sent an email to Superintendent Woodbury requesting an interview and ending with these words: "Would you be willing to sit down with me and one of my reporters and share your plans to address the challenges facing your district? We can speak on the record, off the record or a combination of both. Dennis-Yarmouth is an important piece in the local education puzzle and I would love to hear your thoughts."

We followed this up with three phones calls to Ms. Woodbury secretary who promised to have the superintendent contact us.

Now we need our readers to answer these questions for her

No response has been forthcoming from Ms. Woodbury. Thus, we are forced to bring the interview questions to our readers and ask for your help.

Below are ten questions that we might have asked had we been granted an interview. Should we still not hear from Ms. Woodbury, we welcome our readers' emails on how any of these questions might be answered. We will publish reader responses in a follow-up article if the superintendent remains behind the barricades.

               Send your answer
to any of these questions here and we may use them in the follow-up article.

Ten Questions

  1. School choice and charter schools have taken their toll on the Dennis-Yarmouth schools in the past few years. Indeed, last year DY lost almost $2 million in school choice tuition to other districts with over 300 students choosing to go elsewhere. How do you plan to address this attrition and, over time, reverse this exodus?
  2. Is it possible at all to re-capture kids who have left the district to charters/choice or do you have to focus on retaining the kids you have now.
  3. DY recently converted the M.E. Small Elementary School to one of the new "Innovation Schools". How is this different than a Horace Mann Charter School? What is the advantage of one over the other?
  4. Dennis town meeting recently voted to commence the process of withdrawing grades K-8 from the DY Regional School District. What brought this district to this threshold and how likely is a "separation" to happen?
  5. If Dennis persists in wishing to withdraw K-8, Yarmouth's assent is required. How likely is Yarmouth to go along with the separation and what impact would it have on K-8 in Yarmouth?