Like many other school districts around our area, the process of crafting the 2011-2012 budget continues for the Valley Stream high schools, including North.
One of the main topics of discussion at the March Board of Education meeting for the V.S. Central District was the budget. In addition, the community was informed about a capital reserve fund proposition, the search for a new superintendent and more.
Board Approves 2011-2012 Budget
The Board of Education approved the 2011-2012 budget, which is in the amount of $101,983,619. Board President Ken Cummings explained that they were able to keep the tax levy under a 2 percent increase. He also went on to say that state aid has decreased dramatically, but school officials tried to keep the increase as low as possible while maintaining a good education for the students.
Change in the Automotive Program
Many parents were in attendance at the meeting to voice their opinions about the change in the automotive program within the district. The board proposed moving the location of the program. Instead of having it at South and Central high schools, students would take the class at BOCES in Westbury.
“BOCES has the advance work that we need today. We need to prepare students for the 21st century,” stated Interim Superintendent Richard Marsh.
He explained that continuing the program within the district would cost too much money, because of the repairs and new proper tools that are needed today. He found it to be more economical to have students take the class at BOCES.
Students also spoke at the meeting and explained how important the program is to them, and how it helped them decide what they wanted to do after graduating high school. Marsh applauded the students that came up and voiced their opinions.
The superintendent and board members stressed that they are not taking away the program; it is just a change in location that will benefit the students and allow them to work with modern technology in automotives and become more successful in the future.
Capital Reserve Proposition
At the meeting, the board also established a proposition to create a capital reserve fund, which residents can vote to approve on May 17. They explained that the funds would go toward capital improvements, such as additions and reconstruction, roofing, asbestos abatement, heating/ventilation, masonry work, windows and other similar projects.
The amount that is proposed for the fund is $7,700,000 plus accumulated interest, and would have a term of 10 years. This will be funded by the transfer of unappropriated fund balances from the general fund and the interest accrued over the term of the capital reserve fund.
Superintendent Search Update
Board President Ken Cummings updated the parents on the search for the new superintendent. He explained that 32 people expressed interest for the job position, including 28 from New York, three from New Jersey and one from Illinois. By the end of the month, the board is planning to hold interviews with the candidates.
Also at the meeting…
The board approved the request for retirement from Michelle Gay. Gay has been the director of Special Education in the district for the past 10 years. The board and the superintendent congratulated Gay and thanked her for her years with the district.
Interim Superintendent Marsh also announced the offering of summer school 2011. This year it will be held at Valley Stream Central High School, instead of at South, where its been given in previous years.
The board and the superintendent both congratulated the Valley Stream rifle team, which became state champions for the fifth year.
Stay with Patch for more information on the V.S.C.H.S.D, Valley Stream U.F.S.D 13, Malverne and West Hempstead School Districts.