CLARK, NJ – The Clark Board of Education unanimously voted in favor of the 2014-2015 school budget at a meeting held on May 6, 2014. The budget, totaling $32.7 million, was not subject to a public vote because it fell below the state mandated 2% increase cap. Funding for a proposal to rent the St. Agnes School facility and create an Early Education Center on the site was included in the overall budget calculation. A Clark home with an assessed value of $200,000 will see an increase of approximately $101 in the school tax portion of their tax bill.
Superintendent of Schools Kenneth Knops introduced the budget presentation by reviewing highlights from the current year. Carl K. Kumpf Middle School was designated a “School to Watch” by the National Forum of the New Jersey Association of Middle Level Education and Arthur L. Johnson High School was successfully reaccredited through the Middle States process. Statewide assessments continue to place Clark schools above both the state average and comparative schools in the same District Factor Group (DFG).
Financial details of the budget were presented by School Business Administrator David Oliveira. Local taxpayers fund 87 per cent of the budget and the 2014-2015 increase is up only five tax points ($422,461) from the prior year. Anticipated expenditures in the budget include the St. Agnes project, funding of the negotiated contract agreement with the Clark Education Association, tuition increases for out of district placements, and bathroom remodeling projects at all of the district schools.
At the end of the presentation, Oliveira thanked the parents and the community for their support of the schools. He said that the Board of Ed “tries to keep everything in mind in crafting the budget and come up with a plan that meets the demands of the taxpayers and serves the best needs of the students.”
A vote on the proposed St. Agnes School lease will be held during the Board of Education meeting on Tuesday, May 13. The public session will begin at 7:00 pm in the Clark Council Chamber, 315 Westfield Avenue, Clark.