Written by Rich Forestano Friday, 02 May 2014 00:00
The Mineola School District adopted its 2014-15 budget last week. It will be put up for vote on May 20.
The budget tops off at $87.8 million, a 1.92 percent increase from the 2013-14 budget, which was $86.1 million when it was certified last May. The adopted budget also includes a 1.46 percent increase in the tax levy, the maximum allowed by the state. The 2014-15 levy sits at $79 million.
The budget includes all current educational and co-curricular programs, athletic programs and extra-curricular activities.
“We’ll have a full budget presentation on May 8,” Superintendent Michael Nagler said. “It’ll be prepared for the community. Specific budget lines will be presented.”
Mineola is looking to expand its five-day, half-day pre-k program to all students. The district plans to offer 54 full-day seats. Herricks-based Harbor Day Care, which currently runs a center at the district’s Willis Avenue School, will operate the full-day curriculum.
Students would be chosen based on a lottery on May 8.
“Every child next year will have at a minimum, a five-day, half-day program at Meadow [Drive School] and Hampton [Street School],” said Nagler. “We’re going to fast track registration [for the lottery] now so that we have as many interested parents as possible. So you can still register after the lottery, but you [may] not be able to avail yourself to the full day.”
Mineola can accommodate more than 200 students.
Mineola wants to expand dual language programs and Meadow Drive and Jackson Avenue schools,with teachers splitting days between Spanish and English. The full implementation of common core ELA and math is also on the punch-list.
“We have enough interest in every grade for one [spanish] emersion class,” Nagler stated. “It will be different than Hampton. They currently two classes split between two teachers.”
Other areas the district wants to tackle in the budget include continuing its five-year bus replacement plan, new seats and flooring in the Mineola Middle School auditorium and a new public address system at Hampton Street. The district also wants to add one new truck with a plow and sander and air conditioning for non-instructional spaces at Meadow, Hampton and Jackson.
“We increased [the facilities upgrade] line to just under $700,000,” Nagler said.