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Canton Superintendent Proposes Budget with 1.84 Percent Increase

February 8, 2017 Budget, Government, Schools No Comments

Canton Schools superintendent Kevin D. Case has proposed a 2017-18 budget of $25,629,086, which would represent a $462,388 or 1.84 percent increase in spending over 2016-17 levels.

With the uncertainty whether the state will continue to fund education at its current levels, a $1-million plus increase in “fixed costs,” a state law stipulating that towns keep total budget increases under 2.5 percent and $1.6 million in administrator requests, educators said it was an especially difficult budget process. 

“This has been one of the most challenging budgets I’ve put together in my 10 and a half years in Canton,” Case said.

Among the cuts in the proposed budget would be the reduction of 12 full-time equivalent positions in non-certified staff. Case said specific positions have yet to be determined but those would include positions such as paraprofessionals and tutors.

“It’s a hard decision because we are not over-staffed by any means,” Case said. “These are valuable staff members – very, very difficult decision for me.”

Case added that he hopes, that through attrition, to avoid – or at the very least minimize – layoffs.

Other savings were found through grants, open choice funding and some savings in this year’s capital improvement funding dollars.

The budget does include a few new positions such as an additional kindergarten teacher, a .2 full-time high school world language teacher due to increasing Spanish class sizes and a .25 percent capstone coordinator to oversee senior project initiatives.

The board will host a public hearing on the spending plan at 7 p.m. on Feb. 22. More details will be forthcoming. 

The district will post further information to its website. Additionally, more information, including a timeline of budget dates, will be included in next week’s edition of The Valley Press.

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