Archive for Tuesday, April 29, 2008

School board wants to hear more about $5.3M in budget requests

April 29, 2008


School board wants more info on budget requests

Lawrence School Board members want more information about a five million dollar list of budget requests. Enlarge video

Federal funds to decrease for school district

During their regular meeting tonight, Lawrence School Board members heard about a reduction in federal grant money for next year for the district. Enlarge video

Lawrence school board members want more information as they consider prioritizing outstanding budget requests.

"We're in really tight fiscal times, and so I think it's really important that we honor the commitment that we have to our teachers to pay good salaries, but we also honor our commitment to the community to provide the best education possible," board member Marlene Merrill said.

Administrators presented a revised list of about $5.3 million in requests during a Monday study session. It did not include the costs for items on the table for the current teacher-contract negotiations.

Administrators estimate the board will have about $1.8 million in unrestricted funds to spend on staff raises and any other requests not related to facilities.

Changes from last year's request list includes establishing a $125,000 revolving uniform fund. For the first year, it would provide new uniforms for the Lawrence High School band. Then the next year the money could purchase other high school or junior high uniforms.

"It would support a lot of different programs," LHS Principal Steve Nilhas said.

The new request list also includes $678,004 for school-based mental health services, which consolidates keeping Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center clinical social workers at secondary schools and providing other mental health professionals at elementary schools.

A group that reviewed those services in the district will present its plan in more detail to board members in May.

The new list also removed about $1.3 million worth of requests for learning coaches to help teachers. For next year, administrators will reorganize how the current learning coaches work at schools.

"We feel like we can do it without a big infusion of additional resources," Chief Academic Officer Kim Bodensteiner said.


KsTwister 7 years, 7 months ago

Can't wait to see what athletic projects are needed to raise the bottom line. As many families with school age children are doing what they can in this economy the schools seem insensitive to the struggle they are adding burdens to. Thank God, I don't have students here. I thought school counselors actually provided counseling to students? When did that change? Perhaps if you can eliminate their positions if it isn't working might become a better solution. Somewhere near the bottom of the list you may find a few salary increases for teachers------but I highly doubt it. Ask a teacher.

jmadison 7 years, 7 months ago

How about going to school on Wednesday afternoons, instead of hiring "learning coaches", a boondoggle if there ever was in the money grubbing world of the public education bureacracy.

monkeyhawk 7 years, 7 months ago

Bait and switch wizards ...BTW, are they still planning on placing artificial turf on some of the fields, in light of the recent report on the health hazards of that stuff?

kugrad 7 years, 7 months ago

These budget requests will not all be funded with funds from the recent vote, so you can stop grousing about that.In the meantime, I would like jmadison to 1) Accurately describe what a learning coach is [specifically in this district, not something you can google] and 2) Describe specifically why employing such a practice to improve instruction in the classrooms is a "boondoggle." I have a pretty good feeling he/she is unable to do either, but I'd love to be pleasantly surprised. JMadison, if you do know what you are talking about, please expand on your arguments. If you don't know what you are talking about, please shut the *-up.

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