Elizabeth Schools BOE Recap

Highlights from the January 2019 meetings

The BOE Recap includes highlights from the Elizabeth School District Board of Education January 2019 meetings. For more detailed information, visit the Board Meetings page on the district website.

2019-2020 district calendar

The board approved the 2019-2020 district calendar. The calendar is posted on the district and school websites. Legacy Academy and Frontier High School follow different academic calendars. Frontier High School’s calendar will be available in the coming weeks.

Mill levy override update

The district is making steady progress developing of the mill levy override (MLO) revenue allocations for teacher and support staff compensation, safety and security, and technology.

The MLO is helping the district offer compensation that is more competitive with surrounding districts. Teacher pay will increase by at least 10% and support staff pay by a minimum of 7.5%. The board approved the new salary schedules for teachers, counselors, special services staff, classified staff, bus drivers and coaches at the January 28 BOE meeting. The approved salary schedules are available on the Human Resources page of the district website.

A School Resource Officer (SRO), who will be employed by the Elizabeth Police Department, is expected to be hired and actively working to support Elizabeth High School and Elizabeth Middle School by Aug. 1, 2019. For an overview of the SRO’s role, visit http://bit.ly/SROdetail.

For the remainder of the MLO proceeds designated for safety and security, the district is exploring the addition of a districtwide staff member to help teachers and students with social-emotional and behavior support needs.

Approximately $71,000 of the annual MLO funding will be used to increase student access to technology. In the first two years, 90% of those funds will be to purchase laptop computers (Chromebooks) for students' use. By the second year, there will be a laptop for every student to use at any given time during the school day in grades 4 through 12 at all schools. The remaining 10% will be used for other technology needs such as software tools and subscriptions, classroom technology, as well as Career and Technical Education (CTE), computer science (CS) and STEM support.

Starting in 2021-2022 and beyond, the district will move to a lease model where Chromebooks will be refreshed on a four-year cycle. This allows the district to broaden the scope of technology investments and allocated more MLO funding to support CTE, CS and STEM initiatives, and other technology-related tools and initiatives.

The District Accountability Committee, which includes parents, staff and community members, met for the first time in January to begin oversight of the MLO revenue allocations.

Director of Safety and Emergency Planning

Shane Pynes officially began his role as Elizabeth Schools’ Director of Safety and Emergency Planning in January. This is a new position for the district that was approved by the board in spring 2019. The goal of the position is to provide a coordinated and proactive approach to safety at all schools. You can learn more about Shane and his role as Director of Safety and Emergency Planning in Superintendent Bissonette’s recent update.

Budget revision

The board approved the 2018-19 revised budget. The changes in the district’s funds include:

  • General Fund
    - Increase of $278,589 to the beginning fund balance because staff now have the actual audited numbers are now available.
    - There was an increase in revenues after allocations of $1,476,875 due to the passage of the MLO. The increase would have been greater except the district experienced a larger than projected decrease in students at the October 1 pupil count.
    - Expenses and transfers increased by $1,486,413 due to the transfer to the Bond Fund and increased special services spending.
  • As a result of the General Fund changes, the projected ending fund balance has been reduced by $269,051.
  • Changes to the Food Service Fund were made as a result of better information in revenue and the beginning fund balance. These changes increased the projected ending fund balance by $61,349.

With the budget revision, it’s anticipated that the district’s General Fund will end the current fiscal year with a fund balance of $2,254,687. As a percentage of expenditures and transfers, the projected ending fund balance is 11.05%.

The next Board of Education meeting is Monday, Feb. 11, at 6 p.m. in the board room at the district office.