Inside Freeport Public Schools’ new 2024-25 budget proposal


The Freeport school district is proposing a $244.2 million budget for the 2024-25 academic year, an increase of $5.4 million over the current spending plan. And for the ninth time in the past 10 years, the district’s tax levy will be reduced, next year by 2.12 percent.

In addition, the district managed to save $6.5 million in interest by refinancing outstanding bond payments.

Across village schools, there have been $6.3 million worth of capital improvements thanks to an energy performance contract, which has reduced the carbon footprint of the buildings by 30 percent, district officials said.

“While there is still a lot of information to be solidified regarding New York state’s final budget and school aid, Freeport Public Schools is proud to bring several new programs and services to our students during the 2024-25 school year, while still decreasing the tax levy,” Superintendent Kishore Kuncham said.

In 2021-22, the district was awarded a total of $27.9 million, from the American Rescue Plan Act and the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund — measures implemented in response to the coronavirus pandemic — to be used over a three-year period. Freeport has used the funds to address learning loss, for after-school and summer programming, and for enhanced ventilation and other classroom improvements.

Freeport spends an average of just under $27,000 per student per year, about $6,400 less than the county average.

The priorities of the new budget include the hiring of additional staff across the district, including new teachers, to support new and existing programs and services, as well as an on-site clinical medical assistant at Freeport High School. And the high school will introduce new courses including American Sign Language II, Introduction to Computer Science and Cyber Security, Quantum Information Science and Mathematics, anatomy and physiology.

The Mariachi program — a music program which accents Freeport Public Schools commitment to multiculturalism in various extracurricular initiatives — would be expanded Caroline G. Atkinson Intermediate School to J.W. Dodd Middle School, and new instruments would be purchased for the district’s musical ensemble programs.

“The budget process demonstrates our absolute commitment to fiscal responsibility while maintaining our commitment to education excellence,” Kuncham said.

Work on the spending plan began last November.

There will be two propositions besides the budget on the ballot on May 21. The first would authorize the use of $2.5 million from the district’s capital reserve fund for district-wide capital projects.

The second proposition is intended to give more students at Caroline G. Atkinson Intermediate School and J.W. Dodd access to buses by reducing the transportation mileage minimum for those schools to .75 miles. That would necessitate the deployment of 13 more school buses for $1.3 million and would be entirely offset by the use of revenue, resulting in no tax levy increase.

Incumbent Board of Education Trustee Sunday F. Coward is running unopposed for the single open seat on the board. She is a graduate of Freeport schools, and her children have attended district schools as well. Coward served on the board from 2000 to 2006, and was elected again in 2021.

Polls will be open for the budget vote and school board election from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on May 21. For more information, contact the district clerk, at (516) 867-5209, or visit the district website,, which has voter registration forms and absentee ballot applications.