In the unfortunate situation of an operating override defeat, the Superintendent will need to produce a very limited FY14 budget that will not be able to accommodate for enrollment growth and fully address the budget guidelines outlined above. The budget shortfall will require cutbacks and very challenging trade-offs between educational efforts across the system. If the override fails and these cuts are required, we ask the Superintendent to continue to be creative in identifying alternative ways to deliver programs and services. We also ask that the Superintendent be explicit in explaining reductions and what trade-offs were examined in the process. When making the allocation decisions, we ask the Superintendent use the following guidelines:
1. Keep in mind the System Goals and long-range plans so that the school system will be in the best position to rebuild essential programs should proper funding be available in future years.
2. Focus on maintaining the essential interaction between teachers and students, ensuring that every child’s experience in the classroom is protected to the extent possible. This includes consideration of breadth and depth of academic and extra-curricular programs, social-emotional support, as well as maintaining class sizes that are as favorable as possible. We recognize that programs will need to be cut and that class sizes will likely rise even further.
3. Professional development, teacher collaboration, Common Core implementation, student assessment advances, and the Educator Evaluation System will all need to continue. We ask that the Superintendent continue to fund these efforts, even though they will be less than ideal.
4. Building maintenance needs to continue to be a priority of the system, although limited dollars will require very cost-effective measures for high priority projects.
5. Examine the level and scope of user fees and other source of revenues to preserve programs.