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You are here: Home Section Table Shout it Out School Board Leaders Share Facts of 2020-21 School Budget
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School Board Leaders Share Facts of 2020-21 School Budget

BoardLeadership2020aDear Community Residents:
The Scarsdale Board of Education is pleased to present the proposed budget for the 2020-21 school year. It is a budget that acknowledges our community’s concern about the impact of the pandemic and the economic crisis.

This budget preserves class size practices at the elementary level, the house structure and the expansion of the one-to-one computing program to 8th Grade (an iPad for each student) at the Middle School, the tutorial model and a variety of course offerings at the High School maintaining student choice, mandated special education ratios and a continuum of service, and a multi-pronged approach to safety, security, and emergency management.

This budget is lean, but allows for a flexible response to many unknowns. It includes revenue- and expenditure-based strategies to respond to unknowns such as anticipated reductions in state aid, sales tax, and interest income; includes increases in some reserves, and incorporates budget efficiencies and reductions in deferrable expenses presented to the Board throughout March, April, and May. The Board decided to reach into our Unassigned Fund Balance and reallocated $650,000 more than originally planned so that $1,750,000 of Assigned Fund Balance will support 2020-21 budgeted expenses.

This budget includes $700,000 to improve the safety and experience of the students, staff, and residents who use the High School auditorium for academic and extracurricular activities. These expenses, optimized by work process, cost, and safety, do not impact the tax levy. They will be paid for with funds remaining from the 2014 Bond, which were approved by the community, raised for this purpose, and now sit in the Debt Service Reserve available for this particular use.

Barring further direction from the Governor, if the budget put forth to our voters on June 9th is not approved, it is likely we would be required to adopt a contingency budget. For us, that would mean a $2.4 million budget reduction from this already lean budget, which would cause substantial harm to the Scarsdale educational program. At this level of cuts, core educational programs and values, including staff and class size ratios, could be dramatically and radically affected. Equipment and leasing expenditures would be prohibited, and we’d be required to charge building use fees to PTAs.

This year voting will take place by mail only; all eligible voters will receive ballots and postage-paid return envelopes. Completed ballots must be received by the District Office by Tuesday, June 9 at 5 p.m.

Your participation in this process is vitally important to our entire community.

Thank you.

Pamela Fuehrer, Scarsdale BOE President
Alison Tepper Singer, Scarsdale BOE Vice-President

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