With another school year on the horizon, there are more tough choices for Lawrence School District administrators.
Looking to once again make up a budget deficit of $3.2 million, the district is laying off up to 19 members of the faculty, secretarial staff and facilities workers.
The $93 million proposed budget includes a 3 percent tax levy increase, which is the state’s limit for the district. The tax levy — the amount needed to be raised by tax dollars — is just over $83 million.
The district is expected to receive $7.5 million in state aid (more than $1 million than in the current budget), which will be used to offset mandated and contractual increases. The district is not cutting academic programs such as Advanced Placement classes, high school electives and extracurricular activities and clubs.
Losing experienced staff, social workers and psychologists isn’t a budgetary consequence administrators take lightly. And should finances allow, school board trustees have said they will look to restore positions as needed.
The hard choices made by Lawrence administrators will help the district put resources where they are most needed: in the classroom. We support the proposed budget and urge readers to vote “yes” on Tuesday.
Lunin-Pack and Marcus for trustee
Three community-minded people are running for Dr. Solomon Blisko’s seat on the Lawrence Board of Education: Jesse Lunin-Pack, Tova Plaut and Dov Herman. Blisko is not running for re-election.
All three have demonstrated an ability and a willingness to be involved in and help their communities. Lunin-Pack’s financial expertise would be an asset. Plaut’s experience as an educator would benefit the district, and Herman’s knowledge of the building industry would add to the board’s skill set.
We think the district would be well served by any of the three, but we give the edge to Lunin-Pack. He has exhibited in-depth knowledge of district issues, and his concern is long-term, as he has two young children in Lawrence schools.