Concord School Board unanimously approves $74.17 million preliminary budget
The Concord School Board last night unanimously approved a $74.17 million preliminary budget for next year.
No one from the public commented during the 25-minute meeting.
“It’s been a very long haul to get here, but nice work,” said board President Clint Cogswell.
The budget is up $609,503 – or 0.83 percent – over the current year. The board can revisit the budget in October, after the district’s property valuations are in. Adjustments can be made before a final budget is approved in October.
Continued declining enrollment in the district led to a projected reduction in state aid. Overall, the district expects to lose $1 million in local, state and federal money.
The budget projects a local and state tax rate of $14.08 per $1,000 of assessed property value, compared with $13.55 this year.
Based on enrollment, the budget has a reduction of six elementary classroom teachers, including one from Beaver Meadow School and two each from Christa McAuliffe, Abbott-Downing and Mill Brook schools. One of the positions will transition to the Broken Ground School, where an additional teacher is needed, based on enrollment projections.
At the high school, the budget includes the reduction of nearly six positions spread among departments, including cuts of 1.4 positions in math and 1.4 in English and social studies.
A $240,000 proposal was included for consulting services to help implement behavior plans at the elementary level and add part-time staff to help with special education administration in the elementary schools.
During last night’s meeting, Assistant Superintendent Donna Palley said there will be a special meeting to discuss the proposal with educators. Until then, the money for the project would be held in the budget.
“I think you’ll want to hear from (elementary school teachers). What we’d like to do is just make sure people have their questions answered,” Palley said.
(Iain Wilson can be reached at 369-3313 or firstname.lastname@example.org.)