CF Board “Sending Message’’To Governor
The Central Fulton School Board unanimously accepted a resolution last week that will in turn be sent to the state level to address financial concerns and appropriations proposed in the 2012- 13 budget.
Superintendent Dwayne Northcraft presented those in attendance at the board’s April 10 meeting with a copy of the resolution asking for legislators to end a shift that over the years has slowly moved the funding of public education from the state onto the shoulders of local taxpayers. The resolution, which was approved on a 7-0 roll-call vote, points out that the state constitution says, “The General Assembly shall provide for the maintenance and support of a thorough and efficient system of public education to serve the needs of the Commonwealth.”
In addition, the resolution states the 2011-12 budget not only reduced basic education funding to reimbursement levels established in 2008-09, but for the fourth consecutive year level funded reimbursement for special education.
Multiple appropriations were also axed by the state at the time including accountability block grants, charter school reimbursement, school improvement grants, elementary science programs and dual enrollment.
The resolution further delves into the proposed 2012-13 budget by noting none of the eliminated appropriations are being restored and funding levels continue to flatline. Furthermore, the establishment of a newly created “Student Achievement Block Grant” would “bundle” individually reimbursed expenditures for basic education, pupil transportation and Social Security payments.
“Pupil transportation in the bundle abolishes the COLA sensitive, formula-driven subsidy that includes such variables as age of equipment, miles travelled and ridership. Further, bundling this appropriation invites the elimination of future reimbursement based on actual and necessary expenditures,” the resolution says.
Northcraft stated the resolution is supported by the Pennsylvania School Board Association (PSBA), which is encouraging districts across the state to sign off on the resolution. The resolutions will be forwarded by PSBA to Governor Corbett and the state Budget Committee.
“We’re sending a message,” said Northcraft, who touched on longterm concerns such as transportation, special education and an overall loss in state funding.
In other financial matters addressed last Tuesday, the board made its annual decision to begin advertising for shop and maintenance supplies for the upcoming school year.
The board approved the Early Head Start 2012-13 COLA application and salary schedule. Business manager Jolinda Wilson indicated the COLA is a .72 increase, while the salary schedule includes a 2 percent increase. No raise in salary was granted for Head Start employees the prior year, Wilson said.
The documents, according to Wilson, had previously been approved by Fulton County Center for Families. She stated the school district is the final stamp of approval and is necessary due to the district’s financial responsibility to Head Start.
The Tuscarora Intermediate Unit #11 general operating budget was accepted in the amount of $3,288,249. The district’s share of the budget is recorded at $3,450. In addition to paying for instructional material services, the district will also be responsible for any additional expenses related to the use of the TIU supplemental services such as physical therapy, psychology and vision.
The 2012-13 extracurricular and cocurricular scale was approved by the board as was a resolution for offering Real Estate Tax Installment Payment Plan. The resolution states taxpayers are eligible to pay their taxes in three equal installment payments on or before August 15, October 15 and December 15 of the year in which the tax is levied.
Jeremy Wible and Devon Cunningham were authorized to serve in the respective capacity of volunteer junior high softball coach and volunteer track and field coach.
A job description for technology coordinator was approved as presented to the board aside from one correction that would make the job a middle-management position and not administrative. Experience for the position includes four to six years working in a corporate or educational environment performing duties such as installing, monitoring, troubleshooting and planning network and server infrastructures.
Under curriculum and strategic planning, the board gave a nod of approval to the 2012-13 school calendar as well as the creation of a strategic planning committee that will include members Erin Pistner, Todd Alexander, Scott Alexander, Julie Dovey, Christopher Mellott and Elen Ott.
Multiple field trip requests were approved as submitted to the board. Those scheduled include 25 students to the Jaffa Circus on April 16; 24 students to Penn State Main Campus on April 26; Odyssey of the Mind participants to East Pocono High School on April 13-14; and 25 students to Allegany College of Maryland on April 30.