Warrant Articles under Consideration FY2010

The May 11th warrant articles are due Friday, March 27th.  The School Committee was presented a list of warrant articles for their consideration for FY2010 at their first meeting in March.  The articles were approved at tonight’s meeting.  The specific warrant articles and their justifications are linked below.

 warrant-articles-may-2009-fy-2010

Thank you to Craig Robinson for compiling all of this information.

4 thoughts on “Warrant Articles under Consideration FY2010

  1. Steve Tremblay

    Please understand that I am all for providing the Burlington teachers with better benefits where at all possible.

    But with regards to Article 9 – Burlington School Department Day Care Facility – I cannot understand why we would spend $167,000 (plus annual operating expenses which I find hard to believe will net to zero) on something that will only assist 36 teachers (assuming one child enrolled per teacher). Per the budget presentation which was posted in February, there are projected to be 96 teachers in the elementary schools alone next year. So the total for the town is what 175…200? That’s providing a benefit to only 20% of your teachers…let alone all the other employees in the Burlington School Department.

    If I am missing a piece somewhere, please let me know. Otherwise I consider this a misuse of town funds.

    Regards,
    Steve

    Reply
  2. BHS Employee, Parent, and Town Resident

    I’d have to agree with Steve. My issue is with the expenses calculations… I’d like to see a more detailed breakdown of how the salaries expense numbers were calculated. What happens if only 33 spots are filled? The staff expenses won’t go down. Only the money coming into the daycare will? Who makes up the difference. If the Daycare is open 7-4, employees need to be there before it opens to set up and after is closes to clean up. Also, there is paperwork and professional development childcare providers need to take part in. Was this time accounted for in the budget?

    More importantly though, the $167,500 doesn’t seem to account for start up supplies. The 7 infants and 14 some odd toddlers are going to need a place to nap… Pack N’ Plays would cost a few thousand alone. What about toys and educational resources? Where is that money coming from?

    Again, no one is saying this isn’t a great idea, but I feel there are many questions that haven’t been answered, and the numbers just don’t seem right. If we’re in a 1.4 million dollar deficit and asking ALL teachers for a 1% reduction in their contracted salaries is now the right time for something that benefits such a small portion of the BPS employees?

    Reply
  3. burlingtonps Post author

    Thank you for your comments. We are committed to having the fees cover the operating costs associated with the program. The fees have already been adjusted to cover our projected costs. We are using other daycares as financial models for this program. We will have to demonstrate that the program is self-funding over time.

    In regards to the benefit being extended to only a few teachers, I think forty teachers is a significant group. I agree with you that work-site childcare program is a substantial benefit. Like other benefits, not every employee takes advantage. I see this program as primarily a benefit to our students – which is why I support moving forward and the initial investment in preparing the space.

    High quality and convenient, work-site childcare gets our talented teachers back in their classrooms and other assignments sooner. Many of the teachers who support the program indicated in a survey that a work-site childcare program will allow them to return to work more quickly. Forty teachers/counselors impact far more than forty students.

    The district has some set up items that we are planning on using in the program. The teacher’s group leading this proposal is working on gathering donations and providing much of the start up supplies themselves. If needed, I will provide a more detailed list of supply costs and donations as we move forward.

    Obviously, I respectfully disagree that the one-time expenses for preparing the space are a misuse of town funds. As previously stated, I believe a work-site childcare program will help us attract and retain the highest quality employees and help to bring our employees back sooner from childcare related leaves. These benefits are good for Burlington students. Again, thank you for your comments. Eric Conti

    Reply
  4. HS Employee, Parent, and Town Resident

    Dr. Conti,

    Thanks for the reply and for addressing the questions I raised pertaining the supplies and year to year funding. I, and I’m sure many others, truly appreciate the use of this blog to keep the public informed on issues and plans you and other administrators are planning.

    I completely agree that the daycare isn’t a misuse of funds, but I do still have the opinion now isn’t the right time. I also disagree with your statement “I believe a work-site childcare program will help us attract and retain the highest quality employees.” Town’s are cutting teaching positions left and right. If a prospective ‘high quality teacher is offered a position from multiple towns, I’d wager that salary and security would make their decision. Again, it is an attractive benefit to some, but I don’t think that there is a correlation between a high quality educator and a want/need to work in a town with a childcare program.

    With all that said, I hope that we do one day offer this benefit and I thank you for desire/drive to make our district a BETTER place to work. But, I’d rather see NON-essential projects like these tabled until we have enough funds to pay teacher’s their negotiated raises and can guarantee there won’t be any layoffs!

    Reply

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