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2023 Watch: What's Ahead

Happy New Year!

NPI has remained mostly on hiatus through the holiday season, but we're inching up our watchful eyes as the spring semester chugs forward.

I wanted to bullet a few items I think worth noting as we go into the new year:

  • The Wall Street Theater plays host to the Norwalk Film Festival Jan 21-22. This is the third year and it's sure to be a great experience for the public and opportunity for students alike. Not only does it feature 60 films from all around the world, across all genres, but the event features FREE panels and workshops with incredible guests on interesting film and media related topics at the Norwalk Library. You can purchase screening tickets for the day or a discounted 2-day pass, and students are discounted. Visit for info, schedule, and tickets.

  • Budget season is coming in hot and heavy; and I mean hea-vy. The Board of Education has shot its cannon across the bow and, I am told, there are (thankfully) ongoing discussions between them and the Common Council about where to go from here. There are real, major ramifications unseen in recent years related to the significant loss of COVID relief dollars that the city appropriated for operating expenses, not specifically for COVID-related recovery as intended. That said, there are also real concerns related to such an ambitious ask, particularly when the public has shown understandable skepticism with some of the communications related to policy that have come out of Central Office in recent months. IMO, communication is key here: whether it be between BOE and CC, or either entity and the public, there's no way to get around these things without frank, direct engagement. There will be more on this ahead.

  • School Choice remains a debated topic on social, and NPS has taken its initiative to the Elementary School level. While NPS has picked itself off of the floor it found itself on with regards to to its Middle School communication rollout last year, there are still many questions as to how this will all play out in the years ahead. School Choice is always an issue that elicits strong opinions, and it manifests in different forms in the communities that employ it. Frankly, as much as it looks interesting on paper, I have equal bouts of curiosity and concern with it myself. It's a program that, very generally speaking, doesn't have a 100% success rate. I also still have my evergreen question of how these tracks play out with kids, and the fact that even high school graduates don't know what they want to pursue. Then again, I am open-minded about Norwalk trying something ambitious for the sake of our public school students' academic success and worldly curiosity - as long as there is a constituted and evidence-based plan in place. I think their recent communication bouts NPS has exhibited have led to more nervousness than excitement, but there will be more ahead, to be sure.

Lastly, I want to welcome anyone who wants to write a blog post on a topic that is important to them to submit it to We'd be glad to have you!

Best to everyone in 2023!

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