May 11, 2016 Budget Sub Meeting


Quincy School Committee
Budget and Finance Subcommittee
Mrs. Emily Lebo, Chair
Coddington Building
Wednesday, May 11, 2016, 5:00 p.m.  

  1. Preliminary Discussion of the FY2017 Quincy Public Schools Budget - Mrs. Lebo, Dr. DeCristofaro, Mr. Mullaney

  2. Other Business/Adjournment


Quincy School Committee
Budget & Finance Subcommittee Meeting
Monday, May 11, 2016

A meeting of the Budget & Finance Subcommittee was held on Monday, May 11, 2016 at 5:00 pm in the Coddington Building. Present were Mr. Paul Bregoli, Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, Ms. Barbara Isola, and Mrs. Emily Lebo, Chair. Also attending were Superintendent DeCristofaro, Deputy Superintendent Kevin Mulvey, Mr. Michael Draicchio, Ms. Beth Hallett, Mr. James Mullaney, Mrs. Maura Papile, Mrs. Erin Perkins, Ms. Madeline Roy, Mr. Keith Segalla, Mrs. Ruth Witmer; Citywide Parent Council CoPresident Scott Alessandro; Quincy Education Association Vice-President Michael Ellis; and Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk.

Mrs. Lebo called the Budget & Finance Subcommittee meeting to order at 5:00 pm. Dr. DeCristofaro and Director of Business James Mullaney reviewed the process for budget development. The process begins with Superintendent’s Leadership and Principal Team members identifying areas of consideration with students at the center of the process. For each of the budget areas, key questions are asked to determine if the budget allocation allow for maintaining current services. During the budget development process, the teams collaborate with School Committee to ensure that priorities are met, especially enrollment and class size guidelines.

Over the past five years of Quincy Public Schools budgets, increased funding has allowed for both restoration of programs and positions altered under previous budgets and incremental growth to address the needs of all students. Increased budget funding has provided for the high school Health Interventionists, middle school Technology Engineering and French Foreign Language at Grade 8. Additional positions for Special Education, English Language Learners, Literacy, Instrumental and Choral Music, nurses, attendance officers, Guidance, Psychology, and full-time Kindergarten aides. Additional funding for extracurricular activities, including Athletics provide our students with a range of opportunities beyond the bell. Increased and special investments in technology, security, professional development, transportation, and curriculum materials have made a tremendous difference to staff and students. Dr. DeCristofaro is looking forward to building this year’s budget, the appropriation ensures incredible class sizes and improvement to many programs.

Mr. Mullaney reviewed that the proposed Quincy Public Schools FY2017 Budget is $102,598,022: the Mayor’s appropriation of $98,748,022 plus projected Circuit Breaker Funding of $3,850,00. The Mayor’s appropriation is a 3.3% increase over FY2016. This proposed budget allows for Quincy Public Schools to meet all contractual obligations for the 2016-2017 School Year, including all percentage raises and step and level increases. After level-service funding of all current programs, there is $342,000 available to address class size, academic programs, academic support, non-academic support, academic expenses, and non-academic expenses.

For Academic Classroom Teachers, there are two additional positions, one at the elementary school level to address class size and one at the high school level to increase Foreign Language instruction. For Academic Programs, there are increases of 0.5 positions for English Language Learners and Literacy programs, plus a new position at North Quincy High School split between broadcasting and graphic arts. For Special Education, an additional 2.8 positions will include a teacher for hearingimpaired students, a Transitional Kindergarten class for Lincoln Hancock, and a 0.8 to address student support at Merrymount and Quincy High School

For Academic Support, shifts will be made to reclassify positions between line items. 14 Kindergarten Aide positions are moving back to being grant funded. No changes for Non-Academic Support.

For Academic Expenses, suggested increases include Special Education tuition by $178,000 (anticipated increase in Circuit Breaker funding), $30,000 for CTE supplies, $37,000 to the teacher’s discretionary account (contractual increase in rate), increased funding for educational software, decreasing technology acquisition slightly to offset other increased expenses. Anticipating technology acquisition expenditures to be funded under the Mayor’s Capital Plan. For Non-Academic Expenses, cuts were made to electricity and gasoline to offset anticipated expenses elsewhere

Dr. DeCristofaro said that other budget enhancements will be funded through grant opportunities. The additional CTE position for NQHS will be split between broadcasting and graphic arts to expand Chapter 74 options for students at NQHS. If there is growth in interest, each area could possibly become a full-time position in next year’s budget.

Ms. Isola said she is thankful that School Committee is not in a position where budget cuts are needed. Ms. Isola asked about Atherton Hough Grade 4; Dr. DeCristofaro confirmed that the second classroom position is fully funded. He will meet with Principal Moreira and parents next week.

Mrs. Lebo asked about the Curriculum Director line item in Academic Support, why is there 1.9 positions rather than 2.0. Mr. Mullaney said that 0.1 of the Elementary Curriculum Director is paid under Title I grant.

Mrs. Lebo asked if we have realized fuel savings since Bernazzani has been converted to natural gas. Mr. Mullaney said that the budget is conservative and assumes the fuel costs will be similar.

Mr. Bregoli asked about increased electricity needs for technology. Mr. Mullaney said these continue to increase but feels the budget can cover the current level.

Mrs. Lebo noted that while the overall Quincy Public Schools budget has increased by 3.3%, the professional staff salary increase will be 2% for 2016-2017.

Ms. Isola made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 5:30 pm. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.