School board reviews budget update

Chuck Kajer, Managing Editor

District Finance Director Daniel Pyan updated the New Prague Area School Board on budget issues, reviewing the current budget and giving information on the proposed 2008-09 budget, at the board's April 15 meeting.

Pyan said the district's fund balance was down due to a number of factors, including a lower than anticipated enrollment increase and increased expenses.

Since the district identified the potential problem several weeks ago, Pyan said administrators and staff had identified revisions to the budget to help balance it for the coming year.

He added that the changes have also been reflected in the proposed budget that would be presented at the April 28 meeting. He said projections were being based on a lower rate of enrollment increase, and that higher expenses in areas such as health insurance and utilities were being projected.

The projected budget has revenues of nearly $29.8 million, an increase of 7.51 percent and expenditures of $30.5 million, an increase of 7.48 percent. Pyan said when the budget is presented in two weeks, that difference would be eliminated.

Also at Tuesday's meeting:

• The Board approved an administrative recommendation to not renew the contract of boys hockey varsity coach John Barger.

• Heard a presentation from Eagle View Elementary principal Joan Anderson and staff members Pat Beckius and John Driver regarding an Americorps Grant to bring in a tutor to work one-on-one with students in grades K-3 on reading.

• Approved proposed changes to the high school student handbook in areas of independent study, use of computers, student investigations, dress code and others.

• Approved collective bargaining agreements with the district's technicians and custodians.

• On a 5-2 vote, the board selected Wold Architects to work with the district on its facilities plan.

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