Highlights of the 6/12 Board of Education Meeting

The 2017-2018 budget was one of the main topics discussed at the June 12 Board of Education meeting. Mr. Brad Goldstein, Associate Superintendent of Finance and Business Operations, reported that revenue is projected at $87 million while expenditures are projected at $100 million. The deficit is due to the cost of the kindergarten building expansion at the Sullivan Community Center, which is projected at $12 million.

“The Sullivan Center is a major undertaking that we’ve been preparing for,” said Superintendent Nick Brown. “We have many kids coming and need to be sure we’re meeting their needs.”

The tentative budget will be posted online for public review on June 27.  The public will be able to comment on the budget at the August 14 budget hearing.  The budget will be approved on September 11.

“Overall, I’m confident we have a budget that is addressing our students’ needs and the financial needs of the District,” said Mr. Goldstein.

Mr. Brown discussed the District’s five-year vehicle replacement plan. The plan includes the replacement of one vehicle per year. This year, the District is replacing a vehicle with 143,000 miles. The vehicle will either be traded in or auctioned off.

Space issues were discussed. Mr. Brown said that the District is temporarily handling space limitations by relocating programs.  For instance, Elementary South music programs have been displaced into the stage and former kitchen area, and art classes have been moved into portable classrooms. However, these adjustments are only temporary solutions to the overall space limitations.

Mr. Brown said he would like to receive feedback from the community about the recent referendum. He showed the Board a draft of a 15-question survey. The survey is designed to get a sense of the community’s thoughts and insights on the referendum and the Educational Facilities Master Plan (EFMP). The survey would be posted and publicized for a six-week period. Mr. Brown also suggested that several “Bagels with the Board” meetings be scheduled as a way for community members to provide feedback on the referendum directly to Board members.