The 17-year-old said after the meeting that she hopes to be a counselor at Outdoor School this year and that Guthrie's information was upsetting.

"In today's competitive work environment, you need to prepare the student," Spaur said. "I don't like this."

A kindergarten teacher for 36 years, the last 21 in Carroll, Susan Withnell has seen a lot of changes, she said after the meeting.

If aides in the classroom were cut, her job would become even more challenging.

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"A lot of children are coming to kindergarten without a preschool education," Withnell said. "The expectations for what an exiting kindergartner has, have risen dramatically. I'm teaching what 10 years ago had been a first-grade curriculum."

Board member Virginia Harrison was pleased with the level of attendance at the forum.

"I'm really happy to see this many people present," Harrison said. "It is important for the community to get involved and hear their voices."

Community residents are also invited to attend any of the following hearings:

• Monday, Feb. 11, at Winters Mill High School, 560 Gorsuch Road, Westminster.

• Wednesday, Feb. 20, at Liberty High School, 5855 Bartholow Road, Sykesville.

• Thursday, Feb. 21, at Manchester Valley High School, 3300 Maple Grove Road, Manchester.

• Monday, March 4, at Westminster High School, 1225 Washington Road, Westminster.

• Thursday, March 7, at Century High School, 355 Ronsdale Road, Eldersburg.

• Monday, March 18, at North Carroll High School, 1400 Panther Drive, Hampstead.