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March 7, 2013

CV-S presents budget proposal

(Continued)

The district plans to shift one full-time employee to administration and make a shift in special education service (a $50,000 savings).

Major increases to the proposed spending plan include health insurance premiums, retirement and salaries — totaling more than $300,000. 

The two primary proposed cuts are the reduction of French to a .5 full-time position as the district slowly reduces to Spanish as the sole foreign language and the reduction of one science position to a .5 full-time employee. CV-S is also planning to cut 1.5 clerical positions as an account clerk and keyboard specialist retire. They will be replaced with a part-time position. 

According to Miller, CV-S is seeking to further reduce costs by working collaboratively with other district and BOCES in both instruction and instructional support. He said he anticipates using $20,000 less in fuel and foresees saving more than $30,000 on energy expenses. 

As of the presentation last Thursday, CV-S should get close to $6,900 in state aid. Miller’s proposed budget leaves a budget gap of $79,000. He proposed possibly making more energy and staffing cuts along with transferring money. 

Board member Hilary Lusk suggested looking more into enrollment and class sizes. Perhaps the district needs to consider going to one-section classes, she said. 

Board President Frank McGrath said the school is in an in-between stage. 

“Realistically we are at 1.5 sections in most cases and that does not leave a whole lot of flexibility,” he said. 

Miller said he still considers the district a two-section school. 

“I am aware we are headed toward being a one-section school. I’m just not there yet,” he said. 

He also explained that the school will lose talented teachers if they start chopping positions in half. 

“We could look into sharing staff with other school districts, but who want to travel from one school to another if they do not have to. If teachers have an option of working at one school all day, of course they will chose to do that,” Miller said. 

According to projections provided by Miller, student enrollment at the elementary level looks like it will remain pretty steady with the exception of third grade with an anticipated loss of 11 students. At the secondary level, Miller predicts a drop of about 10 students.

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