ECS: Spring Break Split Next Year
By Andrew LaBorde
The Ellicottville Central School regular board meeting was held on April 10, 2012, at 7:30 p.m.
The board discussed the New York State law that states the school is required to attach their “report card” to the proposed budget. This report card shows the school’s spending per pupil compared to other districts and schools state wide in the same tier as Ellicottville. During the 2009-2010 school year, the most recently reported year, ECS spending per pupil was $18,000. This was down overall from the school year before.
Next up, the board discussed how the school would be taking part in the NYS Dignity Act, which was signed into law in 2010 and takes effect July 1, 2012. The Dignity Act “seeks to provide the state’s public elementary and secondary school students with a safe and supportive environment free from discrimination, intimidation, taunting, harassment, and bullying on school property, a school bus and/or at a school function.” Superintendent Mark Ward stated that ECS would set their own policies and programs that are aligned with the state’s laws and goals.
Ward went on to note how next year the school will switch from having two weeks off in April to one week off in February and one week off in April. He noted that a two-week break is just too much time off and gets in the way of getting things done. Additionally, students need an extra day or two once back in school to get back into “school mode.”
He reaffirmed his and the school’s position on not paying for summer school next year for the students that need it. This will save the school around $10,000 to $12,000 and potentially provide extra motivation to successfully complete the classes during the regular school year. The parents and students are allowed to pay for the summer classes out of pocket if they would still like to attend.
Towards the end of the meeting, Ward brought up the budget and mentioned how the school was currently looking at a projected budget of $10.6 million. This would be a 1.5 percent increase over last year and would be less than the 2008-2009 school year.
The next school board meeting will be on Tuesday, April 24, at 7:30 PM and will be located in the high school library.