Proposal of differing calendars for schools
On Feb. 5, the Westmoreland County School Board met to discuss the budget and calendar for the 2014-2015 school year.
Superintendent Rebecca Lowry started off by summarizing the budgets for the last two years.
She also commented that out of her over 30 years in education, teachers in Westmoreland County are the most committed despite barriers, like limited budgets, that she’s ever seen.
For the year 2014-2015, what the school board would like are no cuts, addition of programs and raises for all. However, what they are facing includes an approximately $300,000 VRS increase, less county revenues, no use of reserves/fund balance and the Governor’s/State Proposal reports an increase.
What they are doing to help overcome these obstacles and make the most out of the budget is prioritizing out from the classroom.
Although there is still time to decide on the calendar for the next school year, Assistant Superintendent Cathy Rice presented several calendar considerations because a change in the calendar could impact the budget. The calendar committee had put together three calendar drafts based on input submitted through calendar committee representatives and communication forum representatives. The three calendar drafts presented were calendar A with 168 days with extended session at the end, which is the current calendar, calendar B with 180 days and a possible summer session, and calendar C with 168 days with extended session at the beginning. She went on to say that calendar B would have several budget implications.