Following last week's presentation outlining the instructional expenditures (Part I) and the complete overview of the proposed 2012-2013 budget for the Garden City school district, the March 7 work session presented the fourth step in the budget review process - a continuation of the instructional expenditures (Part II).
The presentation focused on the instructional expenditures (Part II), existing together with the instructional expenditures (Part I) to account for the 74.33 percent of the budget. This portion of the instructional presentation focused on technology, pupil personnel, athletics and guidance. These expenditures also fall into the programmatic portion (aspects directly affecting students) of the superintendent’s three-part proposed budget.
“We have a tremendous and robust program,” superintendent Dr. Robert Feirsen said.
The presentation started off with a Garden City-produced video, "In Their Own Words," speaking about the benefits of attending Garden City schools in conjunction with moving on to higher education in both social and academic aspects.
“Our students really understand the power of the building community piece,” Dr. Feirsen added, speaking about the district’s mission statement. “We have to balance that desire to give our kids absolutely the best of everything. We have to design a budget the community can afford.”
According to the proposal, the program budget still stands at $78,030,587, which, along with the administrative budget ($11,370,846) and the capital budget ($15,575,318), totals the proposed budget of $104,976,751 for the 2012-13 year. This proposed budget aims to utilize reserves when necessary (but not deplete those accounts) and reduce staff judiciously. Teacher reductions will be accomplished due to reductions in district enrollment.
According to Dr. Feirsen and assistant superintendent for business and finance, Al Chase, no devastating changes will be made in the instructional part II proposal. Technology, pupil personnel, guidance and athletics programs will not be eliminated. Some, however, will be altered to fit the budget.
In the athletics department, the proposed budget produces a total reduction of $95,132. This reduction comes partially from eliminating 19 assistant coaches, four head strength and conditioning coaches and six middle school intramural positions. Staffing reduction offsets however are with the addition of 16 intramural positions.
In the area of special education, 4201 schools (state supported schools) are no longer funded by the state. Tuition costs for students is now falling on the district and although state aid will be provided, full reimbursement is not guaranteed, according to the district presentation.
While some changes are proposed to take place, Chase spoke on any changes in numbers in other aspects of the instructional components such as career and technical education, continuing education, school libraries and media, computer assisted instruction, health services, psychological services, social work services, co-curricular activities and interscholastic athletics. More information, and copies of the workshop presentations will be made available on the district’s website.
The next Board of Education meeting will be March 20 at 8:15 p.m. in the GCHS library and will provide a summary and review of the administration’s budget recommendations.