Wednesday night, the Board of Finance approved a $44.62 million budget proposal by the Board of Education for the 2013-14 school year, a 0.96 percent increase over this year’s $44.2 million total.
“This is probably the lowest (school) budget increase in Waterford history,” Board of Education Chairwoman Kathleen McCarty said. “We have demanded a lot from our teachers and our administrators and they have risen to the challenge.”
The Board of Finance reviewed the budget for more than two hours and proposed no cuts. The board voted 6-1 to approve the budget, with board member Cheryl Larder voting against it.
“We are very mindful of the economy and we are also very mindful of Waterford’s financial status,” Superintendent Jerome Belair said. “So we took that very seriously as we developed this plan.”
The budget adds a security guard at the high school, cuts two teaching positions at the high school and adds one to the elementary school and another to the talented and gifted program and adds a guidance counselor to Clark Lane Middle School. The largest increase in the budget is for tuition for students who choose to attend other school districts, which increased by more than $430,000, or more than the total increase the Board of Education is asking for.
The budget still needs to be approved by the Waterford Representative Town Meeting before it is finalized. For more information on the budget, click here.