The Palisades School District Board of Directors Wednesday initially reviewed the first of three parts of a 2014-2015 preliminary school district budget that points to little or no school tax hike for residents and an increase in technology for teachers and students,
During a 45-minute presentation, multiple administrative personnel detailed and explained four main topics including individual school budget summaries (increase of $4,693 total), comprehensive planning summary (increase of $9,900), warehousing/transportation (decrease of $54,152), and debt service (increase of $2,475).
Presently, the total net change would be a district budget decrease of $37,084 in the four aforementioned budget categories.
According to Palisdades School District Assistant Superintendent Dr.Kate Kieres, the comprehensive plan's academic excellence goal includes a "technology enhancement" increase of $16,450 to purchase a cart of thirty chrome books as classroom instructional aids.
Palisades High School Principal Rich Heffernan stated, "It's all about getting technology into the students' hands---investing in additional equipment and software and the like."
Another comprehensive plan budget component includes student leadership development by securing a community service coordinator with an allocated $10,000 budget stipend, said Heffernan.
He said the coordinator's job would be to connect students with outside organizations where they can volunteer, and teachers would in turn work with these organizations to develop classroom projects.
Additional comprehensive budget goal areas include funding allocations of $10,000 for anti-bullying programming, $5,500 for family-strengthening community events, and $3,500 for healthy choices and habits wellness seminars and instruction.
The second phase of the budget will be presented at the Board's December 2nd meeting with topics to include academic curriculum, special and vocational-technical education, buildings maintenance, and capital projects expenditures.
In other business, the Board, in a 5-4 vote, rejected a motion to hire a substitute extracurricular athletic director to temporarily replace the current athletic director for two months.
The majority of the directors felt the $250 per day cost too prohibitive in addition to the lower number of sporting events occurring during the winter season.