School Board Notes

January 2017

2017-2018 Budget Update

Superintendent Dr. David Zerbe presented a detailed overview of the proposed preliminary budget to the Board at the Tuesday, January 17, 2017 work session. This first look at the budget for 2017-2018 incorporates a number of financial assumptions including benefits costs and salary projections that are likely not to be known in greater detail for several months.

At the Board's direction, the administration prepared a proposed preliminary budget that includes a tax increase not to exceed the Act 1 index (2.5%) set by the state. At this time, expenditures for 2017-2018 are projected at $106,559,218 requiring a millage increase of .7185 above the current millage of 28.7400, resulting in a proposed millage rate of 29.4585.

While it is early in the annual budgeting process, the school district is required to meet a series of state deadlines in preparing a budget for approval, currently scheduled for June 27, 2017. The budgeting process commonly finds the Finance Committee of the Board and the administration working together over the next few months to prepare a final budget. The proposed preliminary budget takes into consideration the current assumptions:

  • All staffing groups are budgeted with a 0% salary increase. Contract negotiations are currently in process for all labor groups and no such figure otherwise has been determined.
  • Employee benefits were calculated at healthcare consortium average for medical and prescription with the assumption that consortium cost projections will firm up over the next few months.
  • Funding for the replacement of equipment for grounds/custodial/maintenance was included ($100,000).
  • The reduction of an administrative staff position.
  • Costs associated with a $10 million bonding in each of the next five years to address the facility needs.
  • A portion of expense for the proposed new English Language Arts resource ($224,000) was included as well.

At the January 24, 2017 voting meeting, the Board approved a resolution under the Act 1 budgeting process indicating that they would not increase taxes above the Act 1 Index of 2.5%.

Review the presentation and proposed preliminary budget in detail, and follow progress on the 2017-2018 budget at

School Consolidation Update

The Board's special meeting on January 10 furthered the discussion on school consolidation, as the Board heard a presentation and update from their consultants, Milone and MacBroom.

The Board directed the administration to gather financial data related to the closure of Audubon Elementary and/or the closure of Arrowhead Elementary. They requested that Milone and MacBroom prepare detailed information for the consideration of scenarios that would see the closure of two elementary schools that would include grade reconfigurations of K-3, 4-5, and 6-8, 9-12 OR 6-7, 8-12. Finally, the Board was in agreement that a decision not to close a school would result in a redistricting at the very least.

Milone and MacBroom will present final recommendations during a February 6 special meeting of the Board, beginning at 7 p.m. at Arcola Intermediate School. At that time, several points will be under consideration for the Board:

  • The closure of Audubon or Arrowhead elementary school
  • The closure of Audubon and Arrowhead elementary schools, and the grade reconfiguration possibilities.

The Meetings in Review

In addition to the budget and work related to school consolidation, the Board also reviewed administrative recommendations related to revisions to transportation services, an overview of which was presented at the work session meeting.

All other items listed on the January 24 agenda were approved.

Junior School Board Directors - January

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This month's Junior School Board Directors are Eagleville fourth grade students Michael Legnola and Carmela Maro. Michael opened the meeting and led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance, while Carmela spoke about why she loves being a student at Eagleville Elementary School!

Above, left to right - School Board President Chris Boardman, Michael Legnola, Carmela Maro, Eagleville Principal Dr. Zanthia Reddish, and Superintendent Dr. David Zerbe.

January 24 School Board Regular Meeting


January 17 School Board Work Session Meeting


January 10 Special Meeting of the School Board


Board Notes

The Methacton School District's Board of School Directors meets each month. School board work session meetings are generally held on the third Tuesday of the month, followed by the regular meeting on the fourth Tuesday (except during the month of December). Regular Board and work session meetings typically take place in the MHS LGI, and all residents are invited to attend. Committee meetings may take place in the Board Room at the Farina Center, or the MHS LGI. Meeting agendas are posted to agenda manager, and start times and locations are posted on the District's website. Please confirm meeting time and location before attending. Download the meeting calendar here. Watch the meeting video online.