ECA Review Reporter
The Clearview School Division held their at the board office in Stettler.
The board was presented a finalized budget for the current school year at the regular board meeting on Thursday, November 22 by Secretary Treasurer Lewis Hill. The budget, based on actual enrollment and funding numbers as of the end of September, shows a total revenue of $32,782 million with expenses of $33,781 million, leaving a net deficit of $998,254.
“The overall deficit in the budget as a whole is a combination of deficits in each of our operations,” said Ken Checkel, chair of the Clearview School Board.
These operations, aside from the individual school budgets, include such sections as transportation and head office operations.
Checkel said that the bulk of the deficit came from the region’s largest schools.
“When we get into our spring budget time, there are going to have to be some adjustments made in some places,” Checkel said.
After the school closure motion was defeated on Thursday, November 15, a motion was passed to begin public consultations to discuss the board’s financial situation.
“It’s very important,” said Checkel. “People have to realize how schools work, how schools are funded and how much revenue they have. We just hope that everybody comes out of the process with a realistic look at the issues we face.”
This year’s deficit comes on the heels of a $783,974 deficit in last year’s school budget.
Educational Plan approved
The board approved a three year educational plan, which sets out the work the division will undertake to meet goals for the next three school years. Information for the plan was developed through feedback from faculty and staff. The board also approved the Annual Educational Results report, which shows how the goals for the previous school year were met. Both documents were not available as of press time but will be made public on Friday, November 30.
The school district will be purchasing five new buses after trustees approved a bus tender report presented by administration. The new buses will replace five older buses which will enter the spare bus fleet. The board directed administration to examine the benefits of smaller buses for use on rural and smaller-demand routes. A report is expected in early 2013.
The board discussed a document entitled “Transparency in Remuneration and Expense Claims.” The document, prepared by Trustee Patty Dittrick, proposes posting detailed expense claims by trustees, the Superintendent and the Secretary Treasurer on the school board’s website. The document will be reviewed and discussed further at the Thursday, December 20 school board meeting.