CNS Updates: Budgets, Elections and More
 
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 Greetings!

Welcome to those who are receiving the CNS newsletter for the first time.  We hope you find it informative and encourage you to learn more about the Needham Public Schools.

 

Much has been happening in the Needham Public Schools this winter.  First, the school budget process for FY14 continues to move forward.  Read below for an update on where we are in the process.  Second, the School Committee recently voted to submit Statements of Interest to the MSBA for future school renovation/rebuilding projects at Hillside, Mitchell and Pollard.  Third, we are entering election season and there is a contested School Committee race.  We encourage all of you to learn about the candidates and vote on April 9th.

3/15/13: In This Issue
FY14 Budget Update
Hillside, Mitchell & Pollard Update
Contested School Committee Race
School Committee Open House
Remembering Jerry Wasserman
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FY14 Budget Update

At its March 5 meeting, the School Committee approved an amended operating budget for the FY14 school year.  The approved budget of $53,995,587 reflects a 5.64% increase over FY13.  This budget is $570,438 lower than Superintendent Gutekanst's original budget request from December.

 

Some of the notable items removed from next year's budget are 2 full-time equivalent teachers at Pollard Middle School ($110,000) and the deferral of a school van replacement to FY15 ($26,000).  There are also several smaller reductions that will adversely impact class sizes and number of electives at Needham High School, decrease professional development opportunities for teachers and staff and defer expenditures to future years.  You can find the most up-to-date information about the school budget on the NPS website

 

The school budget will not be finalized until late Spring when Town Meeting must vote on it.  In the meantime, changes to the state and federal budget, in particular what happens at the federal level with respect to sequestration, could impact Needham's school operating budget.  CNS will continue to provide updates on the school budget in the coming months.  

Hillside, Mitchell & Pollard Update
At its March 5 meeting, the School Committee voted to submit Statements of Interest (SOIs) to the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) for future renovation/rebuilding projects at Hillside and Mitchell Elementary Schools and Pollard Middle School.  If accepted by the MSBA, these SOIs would begin the long process of attempting to secure partial state funding for these projects.  
 
For additional information on the Hillside and Mitchell projects, please visit the Needham Public Schools website dedicated to these two projects.
Contested School Committee Race: Please vote!
The School Committee race is contested in the upcoming election on Tuesday, April 9th. Four candidates are running for three seats.  They are: Joe Barnes, Connie Barr, Marianne Cooley and David Ecsedy. Please take some time to learn about the candidates, and please be sure to vote. 

 

The League of Women Voters will hold a Candidates' Night on Monday, April 1st at 7:00 p.m. in the Broadmeadow Performance Center. This is an opportunity for you to learn about the candidates and help you cast an informed vote. The event will also be replayed on the Needham Channel; visit www.needhamchannel.org for the viewing schedule prior to election day.   
School Committee Open House

On Saturday, March 30, 2013 from 9:00 - 10:30 a.m., the School Committee will hold an Open House for the Needham Community in the Mitchell Elementary School Media Center.  This is a great opportunity to get to know the members of Needham's School Committee, Superintendent Gutekanst, and to ask questions about our schools.  We encourage you to attend!

A Loss in our Community

CNS would like to remember Jerry Wasserman for his years of dedicated service to the Needham community.  In addition to serving on the Board of Selectmen, School Committee and numerous other Boards and volunteer organizations, Jerry was instrumental in the creation of Citizens for Needham Schools.  Jerry was a dedicated advocate for the Needham Public Schools and his contributions to our Town will be long remembered and greatly missed.   

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