SC Budget Sub Committee Minutes 12/12/2012
SHARON PUBLIC SCHOOLS
SHARON, MA 02067
Minutes – December 12, 2012
School Administration Building
Sharon Middle School
75 Mountain Street
Sharon, MA 02067
Present: Timothy Farmer, Glenn Brand, Susan Owen, Jonathan Hitter, Laura Salomons, Emily Smith-Lee and the Finance Committee representative
The meeting was convened at 6:35 p.m.
MOTION: (Salomons/Smith-Lee) Moved to approve the minutes from the September 5, 2012 meeting. Yes vote: Hitter, Salomons, Smith-Lee
Areas of discussion for this meeting:
Circuit Breaker Update
G. Brand and S. Owen presented a summary of Circuit Breaker funding from FY 2007 through FY 2013. Circuit breaker funding is reimbursement from the state for Special Education services. For FY 2013, it is anticipated that Sharon will continue to receive approximately 70% state reimbursement. Sue Owen is working with Steve Kaplan to finalize the list of out-of-district SPED tuitions for next year. Funds can only be spent for out-of-district tuitions and related services that are required in students’ Individual Education Plans. E. Smith-Lee asked if it would be possible to use some of the funding for the transitioning process from NECC (New England Center for Children) to Sharon’s in-house autism program at Heights Elementary School.
There will be further discussion on Circuit Breaker funding as additional information from the state becomes available.
FY 2014 Preliminary Budget Requests
G. Brand and S. Owen presented an overview of the FY 2014 budget planning spreadsheet. Areas of discussion included:
• amount needed for basic rollover from FY 2013 to FY 2014
• staffing needs to maintain current class size
• other requests
• required staffing needs to open doors in FY 2014
• requests moving the district forward
It was stressed that this is a “first pass” and that Mr. Farmer will be meeting with his administrative staff to identify areas that could be cut and/or reduced. There was a lengthy discussion on the need for an additional .50 Wellness teacher at Sharon High School. There will be further discussions on next year’s proposed budget after the Town receives fiscal information from the Priorities Committee – possibly by mid January. The preliminary budget will be discussed at the January 9th School Committee
State Funding Update
G. Brand asked that members refer to the memo that was placed in the drop box for their review. No reductions have been made to Chapter 70 state aid or to any grants that have already been awarded.
Field Trip Fees
There was a discussion on district-wide field trips and the feasibility of incorporating the costs of curricula related field trips into the operating budget. The approximate cost to include field trips in the budget would be approximately $300,000. A suggestion for curbing costs on field trips would be to have a cap number per year. It was the consensus of the members that there should be scholarship money available for overnight field trips and to expand the definition of the “scholarship” line item that is currently in the operating budget.
Early Childhood & Kindergarten Fees
S. Owen reviewed the Children’s Center tuition proposal for FY 2014, which is to keep the tuition the same as it was for FY 2013. Approval of the tuition proposal will be discussed at the December 19th School Committee meeting and voted on at the January 9th meeting.
Five-Year Forecast & Strategic Plan
G. Brand reviewed the Five-year financial plan for fiscal years FY 2012-13 to FY 2016-17. There was a discussion on the Level Services – “Needs” Budget Projections spreadsheet. L. Salomons asked that an additional column for strategic planning be added to the spreadsheet.
There was a brief discussion on the response from Roger Hatch, School Finance Administrator from the Department of Elementary & Secondary Education regarding tuition funded full day kindergarten and the foundation budget. Because Sharon’s required net school spending is over its foundation budget, there would be no additional foundation aid.
The next Budget Subcommittee meeting is tentatively scheduled for January 23rd at 6:00 p.m.
MOTION: (Hitter/Smith-Lee) Motion to adjourn. Yes vote: Hitter, Salomons, Smith Lee
Meeting was adjourned at 7:52 p.m.
Submitted by: Helen Campanario, Recording Secretary to the School Committee