SCOTCH PLAINS-FANWOOD At the regular public meeting of the Board of Education the PTA acknowledged the SPF BOE. Marci Bowman, President of the SPF PTA Council, said “we are all very appreciative of what you do and your commitment to the students of our district and the hard work that you do.” School boards in districts with higher student achievement are significantly different in knowledge, beliefs and actions from the boards in lower achieving districts.
The PTA recognized each member of the Board by pairing up each school in the district with a board member. Board members were presented with framed photos and plaques, and certificates of appreciation “in recognition of dedicated service to the school children of our community.”
January is Board of Education Appreciation Month, as decreed by the State of New Jersey.
Following the meeting agenda, under Instructional Update, the Board reviewed the first of the budget presentations. Ms. Deborah Saridaki and Mr. Thomas Beese, Director of Special Services, presented a tentative Special Education Budget for the school year 2013 – 2014. According to Ms. Saridaki “the Special Education Budget runs somewhere around 20% of our total budget.” There are 745 special education students, approximately 14% of the total student population. 85% of these students are placed within the district. Costs are increasing each year, and the IDEA federal funding is decreasing. The 2013-2014 budget is $18,214,574.
Mr. Beese mentioned that the budget reflects the addition of one teacher for the High School. The other increase that is significant in the budget is in regards to the applied behavioral analysis services.
The Special Education budget presentation is the first of three budget presentations that the Board is planning to have.
During the Superintendent’s Report segment of the agenda Dr. Margaret Hayes moved that the board approve the proposed 2013-2014 school calendar, option A, which has school ending June 19th. Dr. Hayes said that “the feedback that I have received from the public that did choose to weigh in on the calendar was overwhelmingly in support of option A.”