SCHENECTADY, N.Y. – Residents in the Schenectady City School District are invited to attend budget development discussion workshops during the first week of March.
The Schenectady City School District has been forced to cut more than $30 million in 2014-15. Superintendent Larry Springs wants parents and residents to participate in the exercise associated with making cuts within the budget development process.
The workshops will take Schenectady stakeholders through the process of reviewing options, considering the consequences and making cuts. Spring will ask the groups who participate to study a workbook that outlines all of the potential cuts, the action and the impact of each cut.
Each cut is assigned points based on how much money it would save. The stakeholders will then be asked to review the entire workbook and determine 100 points worth of cuts. These cuts will represent the $10 million that the district needs to cut in order to balance the budget.
"Every action in this workbook has a detrimental impact on students," Spring said. "The impact of cutting programs and services for a population of students who are already underserved because of a lack of funding is significant."
Spring will ask stakeholders as they consider cuts to think about the needs of the district's student population. The workbook from which stakeholders will select reductions includes everything from cutting kindergarten classes to shortening the instructional day and reducing the number of social workers to eliminating athletic, co-curricular programs and elementary arts.
Spring believes the process will also encourage some creative and "outside-the-box" thinking.
The first Budget Development Workshop will take place at 6 p.m. on Monday, March 3 at the Howe Early Childhood Education Center. The second workshop is at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, March 4 at the Paige School.