04/07/15                                                                            HIGHLIGHTS: 

      -     Maintains traditional class sizes and programs for students

    -       New instructional materials for the World Language, Business and Technology Programs

    -       Continues an improved elementary DELTA program providing 

    STEM-based enrichment

    -       Funding provided for elementary instructional classroom computers   

    -    Resources to support enhanced safety initiatives

    The Board of Education, at their April 7, 2015 meeting adopted a budget for the 2015-2016 school year in the amount of $49,419,245 for presentation to the district’s residents on May 19, 2015.  The budget maintains a consistent and conservative approach to spending without impacting student services and programs.


     •   Re-directs existing resources to support programs and opportunities for students while continuing support of the existing excellent educational programming along with maintaining traditional class sizes.

     •   Increases the spending plan by 1.9% over the prior year. This change is fiscally prudent despite the district’s sixth consecutive year of state aid cuts while simultaneously absorbing state mandated pension costs.

     •   The proposed spending plan supports new instructional materials for World Language, Business and Technology Programs.  It also includes funding to add the courses AP Physics II and Introduction to Business at the high school.

    • Funding is available for Lumens document cameras and the purchase and installation of elementary instructional classroom computer clusters that have exceeded their useful life.  Infrastructure upgrades, i.e. switch and bandwidth improvements, will also be purchased to align with technology advancements made district-wide. 
    •   Includes funding for School Improvement Planning for the purpose of maintaining high student achievement. A strong Professional Development Plan designed to provide training to implement the state standards, as well as mentoring new teachers, is continued.

     •   Provides resources to participate in the Oneida BOCES Safety Service, including resources to support increased safety initiatives such as school safety officers, upgraded security cameras, bullying prevention programs, and participation with BOCES Child Life Services.  

     •   Includes participation in a consortium of school districts and municipalities to control energy, workers’ compensation, transportation, and technology costs.

    •   A comprehensive review of all revenues and resources was performed.  This exercise, in conjunction with a conservative spending plan, yields a tax increase of 2.7%.  The 2015-2016 spending plan was developed with the premise of remaining within the tax levy limit which is calculated by using an eight-part formula. 

    The budget sustains long-range plans that were developed by the Board of Education to manage cost increases. Long range personnel, facility, curriculum and financial plans are continuously reviewed and have assisted us greatly with district-wide initiatives. Participation in consortiums of school districts is expected to continue to help minimize energy costs, workers’ compensation, transportation, and technology costs.  We continue to successfully participate and explore innovative models for organizational sharing that result in reduced costs of school operations, along with grant monies to fund studies for shared initiatives.

    We continue to remain sensitive to the economic uncertainty that challenges all of us while also continuing to implement plans that are reflective of our history of providing exceptional educational programs that allow our students to excel as lifelong learners and leaders.