NORTHVILLE-Faced with a budget gap of nearly $2 million, Northville Central School District officials are considering changes for the coming year, including potential staff cuts.
The $1.8 million gap includes a cut of 11 percent in state aid, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposed state budget, as well as increases in mandated pension costs, workers' compensation costs, insurance premiums and special education expenses. Federal funding for several programs also ends with this year's budget, according to a news release from District Superintendent Kathy Dougherty.
District officials conducted a budget workshop Wednesday night.
"We're no different from anybody else," Dougherty said Thursday morning. "It could be devastating."
The Hudson River-Black River Regulating District owes the school district $326,000 in property taxes. The school district is one of several entities owed taxes by the regulating district, and Dougherty hopes a lawsuit brought by Fulton County will go forward.
At the budget workshop, Northville Elementary School Principal William Crankshaw presented proposals to restructure students in grades one through six into a multi-age group format with three clusters and reorganization of special education and support services and personnel.
He also proposed the district create its own self-contained special education classrooms, allowing the district to bring several special education students back into the district instead of sending them to expensive out-of-town programs. Half-day kindergarten also is under consideration.
High School Principal Michael Healey proposed reducing the number of students attending BOCES programs. He also will examine individual academic departments for possible staff reductions.
Athletic Director Shelley Murphy discussed eliminating junior varsity athletics and will calculate the per-student cost of each sport.
John R. Becker can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.