Written by Margaret Whitely: firstname.lastname@example.org Friday, 30 March 2012 00:00Because of the two percent tax cap that was instituted by New York State, the New Hyde Park/Garden City Park School budget is still very tentative and as of this date the proposed budget for 2012/2013 is $34, 494, 380.
At the last meeting, New Hyde Park Assistant Superintendent for Business, Michael Frank, tried to explain the very complicated process of this year’s proposed school budget and he pointed out that the budget was, “still a work in progress.”
He stressed, as did superintendent Robert Katulak, that the district’s most important job was to maintain effective academic programs and support services for the students.
He also said that the district was trying to keep class size on the average of 22 to 27 students in primary grades and 25 to 29 students in grades, 4, 5 and 6.
Further, he pointed out that the district wanted to maintain the concept of ‘highly qualified professionals” with a laser-like focus on staff development tied to district goals and program implementation.
Next he said it was important to maintain current teaching staff to help foster local economy and redeploy accordingly to positions needed, rather than additional hiring.
Frank went on to say, “It is important to keep the facilities secure and to maintain them in order to prevent major high cost of repairs on the building and grounds as part of the Capital Reserve Project.
“Both the administrators and the board worked to reduce as many expenditure of the budget without hurting the children. And, through the entire presentation, he maintained that the district did not want to eliminate anything that would hurt the children.”
Michael Frank then went on to explain what programs are expected to be implemented including:
•. Continue to work as a collaborative team of professional administrators and teachers to align the Common Core Learning Standards to the existing curriculum frameworks across the content areas.
• Ongoing training for all instructional support team members in managing school-wide Pyramid of Intervention Model for Response to Intervention mandates.
• Tier three intervention programs such as Read 180, system 44, Wilson Read and FASST Math.
• Literacy training for balanced literacy delivery
• Training in the “Race to the Top” initiatives.
Assistant superintendent Frank went on to announce what would be new in the proposed budget including: Purchase of 30 workstations for the expansion of the Road and Hillside Grade School computer labs.
Plus, implementation of the district’s new Annual professional Performance Review Plan to be submitted to the state by July 1 of 2012.
Creation of formative assessments as benchmarks across the content areas to meet “Race to the Top” rigorous assessments.
Full adoption of the Response to Intervention Model for grades kindergarten through 6.
Integration of Thematic Curriculum Units across the subject areas.
• Gifted Odyssey Program.
• All computer and library services.
• Physical education classes.
• Science Lab Period for all grades.
• Full day kindergarten program.
• UPK (Universal Pre-K Program) for 55 students.
• Academic intervention services in: Reading, Mathematics, English as a Second Language and Speech.
• Core Instructional program in English Language Arts, Mathematics, Social Studies and Science.
• Arts Program.
• Visual Arts Class.
• Stage Band.
Assistant superintendent Frank then went on to explain that this year tax certiorari’s are to be paid by the school district, instead of the county, and $108,000 had to be budgeted for that item.
Further, the district lost the Federal Funding, which amounted to an additional $187,000 in the budget.
As of this meeting the tax levy increase from the prior year is 2.88 percent increase in budget and tax levy, which amounts to average taxpayer in the district paying an increase of $82. 01 which is approx 22 cents a day.
The budget will be voted on May 15 and if it is not passed the board will have to decide whether or not to go to the vote again and that second vote will be held on June 19. The tax levy will depend on the passing or failing. The cuts to achieve a failed budget will amount to $788,000.
The next New Hyde Park/Garden City Park School Board meeting will be held on April 16 and at that time the school board will vote on the above proposed budget to be voted on May 15.