Germantown School Board aims for surplus

District decreasing some positions, dropping long-term care

May 22, 2012

Germantown - With various reductions and revenue outlets, the Germantown School District is hoping for a balanced budget with a $2,000 surplus going into the 2012-2013 school year.

Superintendent Sue Borden presented the School Board with the 2012-2013 preliminary budget during a special meeting Saturday morning. The budget includes the elimination of five teaching positions. The meeting was meant for information purposes only, with the board voting on the preliminary budget in June.

Some pieces of the budget are still unknowns, however, the preliminary budget projects a $675,000 shortfall. With various reductions, revenue generations and efficiencies, the district should be able to balance the budget while adding a few new and needed positions.

"We are to the good by about $2,000 if these shifts come together in some way, shape or form," Borden said.

Cutting teachers at each level

The estimates are conservative, however, the district plans to see budget reductions by eliminating a handful of teaching positions, long-term care insurance and support staff. The preliminary budget includes the elimination of one elementary teaching position to generate a $70,000 reduction; eliminating the equivalent of one middle school teaching position, which equates to a $70,000 reduction and eliminating the equivalent of 3.5 high school teaching positions for a reduction of $259,000. Depending on enrollment at the elementary level, eliminating a position may no longer be a possibility and an increase in staff might be necessary, Borden said.

Changes to long-term care insurance is projected to be a one-time savings of $52,000.

The district is also anticipating a $30,000 savings by reducing aide and support staff, as well as a $30,000 savings by moving all lunch supervision and custodial to Fund 50, which is the food service fund.

The district is also continuing reductions that were implemented last year including the elimination of national travel, 3.7 teaching positions that were not reinstated, one administrative position that was eliminated, 10 percent site budget reductions, the freezing of all districtwide budgets, reduction of the transportation contract and reduction of the audit contract.

Might need tech help

Borden said a few new positions are also needed, particularly in technology, as the district implements a Read to Lead program at the kindergarten level and anticipates a switch in software for the district's student information system.

"All districts are required to adopt the same piece of software for student information systems," Borden said. "If it's a different platform we have to migrate everyone in the system to that new software and it will require staff investment to shift payroll operations and human resources operations."

The district is looking to add a technology support position and a data and instruction technology position to assist with the change in the student information systems software, as well as training teachers on technology including Smart Boards, iPads and new software.

Pieces of the budget puzzle, including the exact monetary savings related to insurance changes and the exact amount in the carry forward fund, are still unknown.

The School Board is targeting the June 11 meeting to vote on the preliminary budget.

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