Click the link above to listen to the entire Norton City School Board Meeting from October 1.
Click the link below for an edited segment from the board meeting.
The Norton Schools Board of Education is considering the steps the district would have to take if the earned-income tax fails in November.
After the cuts already made, the board is considering what would be next to keep the district in the black over the rest of the 2017-2018 school year and the next, in 2019-2020. So far, the district has cut office and teacher aide personnel.
At a special 2 p.m. session at the administration office Oct. 1, the board discussed budget reductions to be made if the proposed earned income tax fails in the November election.
Norton Superintendent Dana Addis listed busing, teachers, assistant coaches and increased participation fees as possibilities.
“Which of these,” Addis asked, “sits at the top of our list as, ‘If we don’t get additional funding for 2019-2020, this will happen’?”
Board member Louis Ule said, “For me, busing is number one. Doubling participation fees and eliminating coaches puts the burden on one group of kids.”
Fellow board member Pat Santelli said cutting busing to the state minimum requirement would save only $43,000.
“But it’s at the top of the list,” Santelli said.
Fellow board member Chris Inks commented, “We’ve talked about this before; no one likes to say it out loud but, we gotta make it hurt.”
“It’ll hurt,” said Treasurer Stephanie Hagenbush, “but it spreads it around. It’s not concentrated on just kids at the high school, so they’re not paying for everything.”
Ule argued for teacher cuts before assistant coaches.
“Unfortunately,” Ule said, “teachers is the biggest number in the budget, and we’re eventually going to have to go there.”
Addis recalled the number of students in the high school English he formerly taught, and said eliminating teachers would increase the number of students per classroom.
“But,” he said, “one teacher with 28 kids in a class is different than one coach with 28 athletes on a field. There’s a larger safety issue.”
Jim Eritano, Herald Staff Writer
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