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School Board Minutes 03/18/13 Public Hearing
LAKE REGION SCHOOL DISTRICT
PUBLIC HEARING
March 18, 2013


There was a Public Hearing on Monday, March 18, 2013 at 6:00 p.m. at Lake Region Vocational Center.

Board members present were:  Jody Gray, Chairperson, Janice Barter,         Beth Chaplin, Karen Eller, Joday Gray, Elaine Heiuser, Cindy LeBlanc,     Joseph McMahon, Richard Merritt, Peter Morrison, Donna Norton,              Erica Pond Green,  Philip Shane, and Karla Swanson-Murphy.

Administrators present were:  Tonya Arnold, Carrie Castonguay, June Conley, Kirsten Goff, Lisa Caron, Ted Finn, Deborah Howard, Andrew Madura,
John Dickerson, Rosie Schacht, Joshua Sturk, Paul True, Cheryl Turpin,
Sherrie Small, and Kathleen Beecher, Superintendent of Schools.

Sherrie Small presented the following information:

2013-14 Budget Highlights

  • The Finance Committee requested a needs-based budget.
  • The Leadership Team proposed a needs based budget which totaled $28,400,884, an 8.74% increase.
  • After viewing the budget, the Finance Committee reduced it by $343,093, reducing it to $28,057,791, a 7.5% increase.
  • State subsidy is expected to decline approximately $150,000 in 2013-14.
  • In 2012-13, the subsidy was $1,727,721, but then was reduced by a curtailment of $114,558.40.  This is included in the budget number above.
  • The Governor is proposing discontinuing Town Revenue Sharing, this will be voted on in May.  This will affect the towns and the district.
  • The MLTI Program is awaiting renewal.  Bids have been awarded, we are still waiting for pricing.
  • Songo Locks School’s bond is paid in full, reducing debt service by $254,500.
  • Federal budget cuts affect QSCB Bond Interest Subsidy Credit by approximately $50,000.  
2013-14 Leadership Team Needs-Based Budget

Several new positions totaling approximately $1,000,000 were included in the budget.  Positions included are as follows:

  • Lake Region High School – SIG (School Improvement Grant) “keepers”
  • Student Advocate/High School Completion Coordinator          
  • Six Academy Leader stipends                                   
  • 8th to 9th grade Transition Summer Academy                         
  • LRHS - Educational Technician III for the Alternative Education Program
  • LRHS – In-School Suspension Monitor (3 days/week)                  
  • 3 Elementary Teachers, a Grade 5 Teacher at Stevens Brook Elementary School,
2 Teachers at Songo Locks School, Grades 1 and 3 to keep class sizes to approximately 18 students.                                                        
  • Lake Region Vocational Center - Firefighter/EMT, Early Childhood,
Childcare, Student Services Coordinator

2013-14 Leadership Team Needs-Based Budget  (continued)
                           
  • 2 Pre-K programs (Located at Stevens Brook and Casco/Naples)                              
  • District-wide Literacy/Writing Coach (.5)                            
  • School Health Coordinator/Grant Writer (.5)                           
  • Resource Officer - (to add to possible grant funding)                    
  • Elementary Intervention  (including amount that has been paid by a grant)                                             
  • Additional Gifted and Talented services grades 6-12                  
  • ELL Coordinator/Teacher                                              
  • MS Literacy/Math Instruction/Intervention Coach – Similar to Literacy
Coaches at the elementary schools                       

The Finance Committee reduced $343,092 from the budget by eliminating the following:  
  • School Health Coordinator/Grant Writer (.5)                          
  • 1 Teacher at Songo Locks School                                      
  • LRVC – Firefighter/EMT/Early Childhood, Childcare                   
  • Elementary Stipends
  • In-School Suspension Monitor                                         
  • Reduced Student Services Coordinator to 1 day per week               
  • Reduced Pre-K to $100,000
Projected Enrollments were reviewed for the elementary Schools

One grade 5 teacher is needed at Stevens Brook Elementary School.  
One additional teacher has been added for Songo Locks School and the grade placement will be determined by the school.

Debt Service
                                             Annual Payment      Yr. Complete
Debt Service Schedule:
Songo Locks School was paid in full           $  254,500             2012
Stevens Brook Elementary School                  382,054             2020
LRMS.Fields                                      205,344             2019
LRHS/VC/ESB *                                  1,521,095     2026, 2030, 2031

State Revolving Renovation Fund:
  0% Interest & 30% forgiven                      49,716             2016

*Most of the interest ($502,866 of $563,468) on the QSCB Bond is subsidized by the Federal Government.  We are now required to budget for the interest expense of $502,866 that the Federal Government subsidizes.  Due to Federal budget cuts, this subsidy will be reduced by approximately 10%, we will budget an offsetting revenue of $450,000.

Historical Budget/State Subsidy

 School          General Fund     Increase/       State          Increase/
  Year              Budget        Decrease       Subsidy         Decrease

2013-14           $28,057,791     $1,938,711    $1,580,648      $ (147,073)
2012-13            26,119,080        236,580**   1,613,163*        779,030
2011-12            25,882,500        666,014**     834,133        (359,439)
2010-11            25,216,486       (215,085)    1,193,572        (814,958)
2009-10            25,431,571        100,013     2,008,530      (1,073,928)
2008-09            25,331,558       (711,233)    3,082,458      (2,447,964)
2007-08            26,042,791      1,240,133     5,530,422        (833,300)

2012-13 budget is only $75,000 more than the 2007-08 budget.

*Includes curtailment of $114,558.
**Increase due to Debt Service on HS/VC/ESB Project of $133,125 and $705,554
  respectively.
                       
Budget related Dates:
                     
Monday, April 1          Approve the budget and sign warrants
                        Crooked River @ 7:00 p.m.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013     District Budget Meeting at
                         Lake Region High School Gym – 6:30 p.m.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013    Budget Validation Referendum
                        (3rd Year, Time to vote on continuance)
                        Vote in each town

The meeting was opened for public comments:

Bernie King a Selectman from Bridgton asked if the Pre-K Program was important enough to spend $100,000 on.   Superintendent Beecher responded that the students in the Pre-K program 2 years ago are now in first grade.  The results are very good for where the students are placing on testing.  Early intervention is needed as all students don’t come to school ready for school.
The Pre-K program gives students an idea of what school is like, they learn how to wait in line, and learn their numbers and letters.  A lot of students are not going to pre-school.  Early grade teachers are seeing a difference.

Ted Finn at Lake Region High School asked the Board to consider reinstating the In-School Suspension monitor position back into the budget.  Discipline from year one to year two went down from 1,492 incidents to approximately 700 incidents.   Mr. Finn gave full credit to the staff who changed their classroom management practices.  Certain consequences cannot be dealt with in the classroom.  The Board told Mr. Finn they did not want students suspended for skipping class or cutting classes.  Therefore, there needs to be an in-school suspension.  Last year there was no in-school suspension.  This year it was brought back for 3-days a week.  If it is not reinstated, the students would receive an out-of-school suspension.

 


Rick Paraschak, a Selectman from Naples, thanked the Leadership Team for their hard work.  He mentioned that the town is also facing a possible reduction in State monies.  This will have a substantial impact on the Town of Naples.   He urged the Board to go with the Finance Committee’s recommendation for reductions to the budget.  He reminded Board members that any increase given to the Town would go directly to the taxpayers.

Ken Murphy, a resident from Bridgton, asked the District to find out how the Maine State Lottery money is used for education purposes.  

The Public Hearing adjourned at 6:27 p.m.

                                                                __________________________________
                                                                            Secretary

                                                                __________________________________
                                                                        Date Approved