Public hearings set to discuss school boards
FARMINGTON — A series of public hearings will start this week to collect comments about the proposed apportionment plans for school boards overseeing tribally controlled grant schools on the Navajo Nation.
Matthew Tso, legislative analyst with the tribe’s Department of Diné Education, said the purpose of the public hearings is to gather input and comments about the four proposed plans.
The apportionment plan determines the number of people on each school board and how many seats each chapter in the area receives. Tribal law mandates the apportionment planning process occur every four years.
A presentation about the proposed plans will be made during the public hearings, Tso said.
Comments collected during the public hearings and those submitted to the education department will be shared with the Health, Education and Human Services Committee, which serves as the legislative oversight for the department.
The committee is the final approval authority for the apportionment plan and provides the plan to the Navajo Board of Election Supervisors for use in the school board elections, according to tribal law.
The plan approved by the committee will be used in this year’s school board election, Tso said.
The filing period for school boards, chapter officials, farm board members and other offices opens March 3, according to the Navajo Election Administration.
The first public hearing is Monday at the Shiprock Chapter House and a second hearing will be Tuesday at the Crownpoint Chapter House. Both start at 10 a.m.
Additional hearings will take place in Fort Defiance, Many Farms and Tuba City in Arizona.
Written comments can be mailed to the Department of Diné Education, Attention: Pauletta Tsosie, P.O. Box 670, Window Rock, AZ 86515.
Comments can also be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by fax at 928-871-7474.
For more information about the proposed apportionment plans, call Matthew Tso or Darrick Franklin at 928-871-7475.
Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636.