Board Reduces District Budget

The MVLA school board has decided to reduce the district budget by $2 million for the 2012-2013 school year. On Thursday, March 1, a group of around 20 parents, students and staff met together as the district budget advisory group to discuss ways that our district could possibly reduce costs.

“The areas that have the greatest impact on programs for kids will be maintained first,” Superintendent Dr. Barry Groves said in an e-mail.

Our district has reduced its budget by $3.2 million over the course of three years, Groves said. The size of the incoming freshman classes have consistently increased over the past few years.

However, the district only receives a set amount of money to run the schools within the district. Even when the number of students increases, which leads to increasing costs, the district does not receive any additional money.
There is currently an initiated state statute regarding increased funding for public education. It would increase tax rates for most Californians and bring in an estimated $10 billion. The money would then be allocated toward public school districts and early childhood development programs. The statute also says that the state income tax increase would stop after 12 years. However, it may or may not end up on the upcoming November ballot.

The district board has decided to reduce costs even more due to the fiscal uncertainty of more cuts or more funding from the California government.

The advisory board plans to meet several more times to continue thinking of new ideas before the district will set a definite plan. It plans to set specific budget reduction cuts by May.

“Our commitment is to maintain high quality educational programs for our students,” Groves said.