School Committee Home Page

Melrose Avenue School
December 12, 2002

Present: Catherine Kaiser, Chairperson

Barbara Davis

Mary Keen

Elizabeth Gooding

William Brennan

Present: Katherine Sipala, Superintendent

Elizabeth Pinto, DPS

Maria Alfred, Business Manager

Ken Littman, Town Council Liaison

Call to Order: Ms. Kaiser called the general meeting to order at 7:04 p.m. and led the Pledge of Allegiance.

Ms. Kaiser called the Roll Call. All Present

Public Forum: Mrs. Ginny Perry spoke on behalf of SELAC regarding the 2003-04 School Budget in regards to Special Education costs.

Mrs. Harle Phelps asked for a summary of the last School Committee’s discussion regarding the 2003-04 School Budget.

Unfinished Business:

Budget 2003/04 Discussion and Vote: Mrs. Sipala opened with a statement to the School Committee and audience regarding the budget and the most recent changes. She reiterated the School Committee Goals for the 2003-04 school year and summarized the changes made to the budget.

Mrs. Sipala thanked Ms. Pinto, Mrs. Alfred and Mr. Kitts for their collaboration on this new budget.

Mrs. Sipala summarized the budget changes presented last week and then presented the following changes: the custodial position was cut to under 20 hours a week making a savings of 4,300 in benefits. Blue Cross figures were recalculated and recalculations also made in the areas of Vocational tuition, electrical costs in both schools and certified retirement.

The new changes show an increase in Rogers High School tuition and a cost of $3,000. for the removal of dead trees.

Mrs. Alfred further explained the budget in the areas of Reserved Fund, the Capital Reserve Fund and the Revised Debt Service.

Mrs. Sipala stated that Mrs. Alfred felt that we could cover any unexpected tuition emergencies should they arise.

Discussion was held on the Reserved Fund Balance.

Discussion was held regarding the change in the custodial position. It was calculated that this change would make the final budget figure $9,095,581.

Ms. Kaiser presented a chart showing this year's increases that are non-negotiable compared to last year’s budget.

Discussion was held regarding unfounded State mandates.

Mrs. Sipala informed the School Committee that a representative from RIDE would be willing to come to the January 9th School Committee to speak on Charter Schools. It was suggested that other School Committees in the South County area be invited to attend.

Questions were taken from the audience.

Ms. Kaiser made a final statement to the audience regarding the 2003-04 School Budget.

Ms. Davis moved to accept the proposed budget of $9,095,881 for the 2003-04 fiscal year. Mrs. Gooding seconded. Discussion was held.

Ms. Davis amended the motion to accept the budget in the amount of$9,207.581. Mrs. Gooding seconded.

A roll call was taken. Mr. Brennan; yes, Mrs. Gooding; yes, Ms. Kaiser; yes, Mrs. Keen; yes, Ms. Davis; yes. So moved.

Mrs. Sipala stated that Mrs. Crawford, Town Administrator, asked to change the School Committee’s Budget presentation day to Monday the 6th. Discussion was held.

Mrs. Sipala will suggest the January 8th as an alternative date.

Mrs. Sipala asked for feedback from the Committee and audience on what was needed from her to make the best presentation to the Town. Discussion was held.

Adjourned: Mr. Brennan moved and Mrs. Keen seconded to adjourn the meeting at 8:00 P.M.

So moved.





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Chairperson, Jamestown School Committee Date