Lynchburg Mayor Treney Tweedy issued the following statement today, Friday, June 14, regarding the Thursday, June 13 press release issued by Lynchburg City School Superintendent Dr. Crystal Edwards regarding the School’s budget:
“The leadership of Lynchburg City Schools, Superintendent Crystal Edwards, Board Chair Susan Morrison and members of the Lynchburg City School Board have stood behind their commitment to transparency, working collaboratively and diligently with City Council to fund the needs of our students and staff of LCS. During the past year, they have met with City Council during joint retreats and individual meetings, discussed and received the often uncomfortable and critical suggestions of all City Council members at various times regarding school division operations, programming and annual budgets. They listened and acted on what they heard.
While the questioning and open debates have not been easy or comfortable, they have been necessary, and the Superintendent and Board leadership heard the charge put before them by Council – ‘to become a stronger, more effective, and efficient and successful school division for our students, staff and our community.’ Superintendent Edwards took seriously the charge given to her one year ago. I am pleased that in this new era of school division leadership, they question more, dig deeper, and establish new review processes, thus, learning they have the additional funding to support their needs, even after the normal budget process winds down.
Returning the $862,000 to the City is a strong statement of their commitment to being good stewards of public education funding. Again, in this new era of leadership and increased expectations, the currently forming collaborative, Education Task Force for the Future of Education in Lynchburg: Pre-K -12 and Beyond, is yet another opportunity to support the future long-term strategic planning, visioning and operations for the school division. Starting the process with funding that meets current needs is a good thing for all!
As the school division leadership goes through the process of hiring interim financial personnel and reviewing and establishing budget practices and protocols that will continue to strengthen Lynchburg City Schools, I will support their efforts and provide assistance as needed. I want to make it clear that I am making this statement only as a member of Council and as its Mayor. I am not speaking on behalf of the members of Council. I am sure each member of Council will and should speak on his or her own behalf.”