Education

Chatham BOE Passes Preliminary Budget; Changes Expected for April 16 Public Hearing to Include Mental Health, Security

1982a21f07682c6e764c_IMG_1281.jpg
A list of what is included and not included in the preliminary School District of the Chathams budget Credits: TAP Chatham
c601db0f19f5e855ebe0_DSCN2038.JPG
Credits: TAP Chatham
cae969f7f3b0107b0ab8_DSCN2061.JPG
Credits: TAP Chatham
b83badf331363c5acf5f_DSCN2063.JPG
Credits: TAP Chatham
7a0ca74aa8409c831a73_DSCN2064.JPG
Compared to the schools listed, Chatham's $15,157 spent per pupil is the lowest Credits: TAP Chatham
851870fea92486b6dd43_IMG_1278.JPG
Chatham superintendent Michael LaSusa presents the preliminary budget as Peter Daquila, board secretary/administrator, looks on Credits: TAP Chatham
9455577d648285a712d0_17acd6fcaedbc99e4fae_IMG_1282.jpg
Major expenses not included in the budget that could be added through second proposals voted on by the taxpayers Credits: TAP Chatham
450c49768777a696a760_IMG_1285.JPG
Board members Mike Ryan and Sal Arnuk discuss budget options Credits: TAP Chatham
e9095c2bcc263babff51_IMG_1288.jpg
Board members Michael Valenti and Mary Chambers during budget meeting Credits: TAP Chatham
1982a21f07682c6e764c_IMG_1281.jpg

CHATHAM, NJ - The Chatham Board of Education voted, 8-0, to pass its preliminary budget for the 2018/2019 school year, but signaled changes that will include mental health and safety additions - and likely two second proposals for public approval - at its regular meeting held Monday night.

Chatham Superintendent Michael LaSusa presented the preliminary budget in place of finance chairman Matt Gilfillan, who was absent, in the open budget meeting held before the regular meeting.

The preliminary budget includes a 2.98 percent increase over this year but is expected to be adjusted to 3.2 percent before the April 16 public hearing on the budget to include the hiring of at least one mental health professional. Because of health insurance waivers, the budget could be increased by as much as 3.6 percent without voter approval.

Sign Up for E-News

Board president Jill Critchley Weber indicated the need for second public questions - now known as second proposals - for additions to the budget that will need voter approval.

Mental health has become a priority since a February student wellness report revealed that 152 students - grades six through 12 - had seriously considered suicide over the past year. The board also is focused on school safety after the Feb. 14 Parkland, Fla., shootings took 17 lives at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

LaSusa noted that enrollment is flattening off at the lower levels in Chatham, but is still growing at the high school. Although employee health care costs had gone up 14.5 percent the last two years, Chatham has reduced that increase this year to 9.9 percent by switching from Aetna Insurance to the School Health Insurance Fund, a consortium of about 45 districts.

LaSusa also said that due to Gov. Phil Murphy's budget, Chatham is slated to receive about $170,000 in additional state funding over last year.

LaSusa gives an overview of the preliminary budget in the open meeting Monday

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finance committee member Sal Arnuk recaps the challenges and constraints in putting together the BOE budget

Board President Jill Critchley Weber asks about added security in the board's discussion on the budget. Sal Arnuk said that more discussion is needed on the subject.

Separate proposals to add mental health professionals and security will have to be approved by the taxpayers. The list of major expenses not included in the budget is below.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

Chatham

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_e54353bd68f7785329f6_donate-blood

Fri, April 27, 2:00 PM

Madison Area YMCA - Kroll Conference Room, Madison

Blood Drive

Giving Back Health & Wellness Other

Sun, May 20, 2:00 PM

Chatham Township Municipal Building, Chatham

A Tour of Chatham Township and Green Village

Arts & Entertainment

A Week at the Library of The Chathams Monday, April 9 – Sunday, April 15, 2018

ESL PROGRAM ENROLLING NOW!

The program will be held on Thursdays, May 3 through June 21 – 1:30 to 2:30 pm

Registration required

For anyone wanting to improve their English language skills, we are starting our first ever ESL program.  The program will be conducted by Language Education and Resource Network (LEARN) and volunteer tutors for 8 weeks.  Further sessions may be ...

Spending More Per Pupil Doesn’t Guarantee Additional or Enhanced Success

April 20, 2018

Dear Editor:

At the April 16th Board of Education meeting, Board member Sal Arnuk stated: “I am ashamed to see the district at the bottom of the list in per-pupil spending.”  On the contrary, Board member Arnuk should be exceedingly proud of how our Board of Education is able to consistently be ranked as the top school district in our state at the cost it currently spends per ...

Financial Planning for Recent College Graduates from Chatham Wealth Management

April 20, 2018

 

It’s that time of the year when many families are excitedly getting ready to attend their children’s college graduation. Where has the time gone? It feels like just yesterday that we were dropping them off for freshman year.

Well, time does pass quickly and now would be a really good time to give your graduating children some savings and investment advice. Below are a ...