The Board of Education discussed and acted on several items at its regular meeting on April 24.
• Shelton High School seniors will be graduating on Thursday, June 13, with a rain date of Friday, June 14. The Board of Education approved the dates.
• School officials are still working to eliminate what presently stands as a $108,932 deficit in the current fiscal year’s budget.
Board Vice Chair Tom Minotti said the school finance department will continue to review non-general fund accounts and will make transfers to “mitigate or eliminate the deficit.” Minotti said the major factors causing the deficit are additional costs for substitute teachers, with an overage of some $182,000; special education tuition, with an overage of some $492,000; special education transportation, with an overage of some $390,000; and special education professional and technical services, with an overage of some $193,000.
Minotti said the freeze in hiring and discretionary spending will remain in place until the school’s finance department can accurately determine the balances.
• Seven teachers have opted to participate in the early retirement incentive plan the school district had been offering. The Board of Education approved the early retirement incentive plan.
When asked if there needed to be a specific number of teachers participating to make this early retirement incentive plan a positive for the budget, Board of Education Chairman Mark Holden said anything that will “preserve jobs is worth doing.”
The Board of Education’s proposed budget for the coming fiscal year included the elimination of 14 teachers and an administrator, but that does not factor in any additional reductions in what the board has requested. Mayor Mark Lauretti’s budget kept the school figure identical to the 2018-19 fiscal year, which school officials have already stated that, if approved, that would force more staffing reductions.
• The board accepted a donation of $6,120 from Elizabeth Shelton School PTO for the purchase of 24 Chromebooks for Elizabeth Shelton School.
• The board accepted a donation of $1,499 from Elizabeth Shelton School PTO to purchase a 3D printer for Elizabeth Shelton School.
• The board accepted a donation of new marching percussion equipment, worth some $14,000, for the Shelton High School band. The donation was from the Shelton High School Marching Gaels Parents Association.
brian.gioiele@hearstmediact.com