Schalmont Superintendent Valerie Kelsey talks about developing the 2012-13 budget during the district’s first budget forum on Tuesday, Jan. 17. The first draft of next school year’s budget will be presented at the upcoming Board of Education meeting on Monday, Jan. 23.
Photo by John Purcell.
continued “We will continue to be talking to both districts about the feasibility of a study to look at shared services and perhaps even to the extent beyond shared services,” Kelsey said. “Our governor and our state is talking about school consolidations and school mergers … we potentially will also in the future need to talk about these changes.”
A district exit survey conducted during last May’s budget vote showed 60 percent of voters who completed the survey said keeping college-level and AP courses is the top funding priority. 35 percent said maintaining existing class sizes is the most important thing, falling to the bottom of the list.
Within the 40 percent support range in respective order was honors/other electives, interscholastic athletics, classroom technology, enrichment/accelerated courses and music electives.
“Many people who said they voted ‘no’ on the budget gave us feedback, it was not because they didn’t believe in our schools and not that they didn’t think our schools were good, but they just plain could not afford any more,” Kelsey said.
Reductions will be a reality in the 2012-13 budget, she said, with a focus on making cuts across the board at all schools and programs. The exact cuts haven’t been determined yet, she said, but the first draft of the budget will be presented on Monday, Jan. 23, during the Board of Education meeting at the middle school at 7 p.m.