The Board of Education of Anne Arundel County will discuss and adopt its Fiscal Year 2017 operating and capital budget requests at its next meeting, scheduled for 10 a.m. on Wednesday, February 17, 2016. The meeting will be held in the Board Room at the Parham Building, located at 2644 Riva Road in Annapolis.
Superintendent George Arlotto has recommended a $1.14 billion Fiscal Year 2017 operating budget that would set aside $15.5 million for full step increases or the equivalent for employees, fund new classroom teaching positions to address enrollment increases and growing class sizes, and provide additional resources to support elementary education and the needs of English Language Learners.
The recommendation also includes:
- $15 million to replenish the school system’s health-care fund, which has been drawn down in prior years as the County has utilized it to fund other parts of the budget.
- $1.5 million to add seventh grade at the Monarch Global contract school and support AACPS’ charter schools.
- $449,000 for six special education teachers.
- $358,000 to add four English Language Acquisition classroom teachers and an interpreter for the International Student Services Office.
- $169,000 for three additional bilingual facilitators to provide critical assistance and support to non-English speaking families.
- $1.2 million for 11.5 teaching positions to expand the Enhancing Elementary Excellence (Triple-E) program to the nine elementary schools in the Chesapeake and Northeast clusters.
- $654,000 for four positions to enhance the STEM programs at Lindale and Central middle schools.
Dr. Arlotto also included in his budget recommendation $8.1 million to shift school start and dismissal times in August 2017. The funding would be combined with the $602,000 allocated by the County Council last year to enact a plan that would see high schools start at 8:30 a.m., middle schools begin no earlier than 9:30 a.m., and elementary schools open between 7:50 and 9:15 a.m. No school would dismiss later than 4:15 p.m. AACPS has had three community forums to discuss the start time proposal and an online survey for public input is available here through Sunday, February 14.
In his $255.6 million recommended capital budget, Dr. Arlotto allocated more than $74 million to pre-existing renovation projects, including Severna Park High School and Manor View, High Point, George Cromwell, Jessup, and Arnold elementary schools. His budget request also includes:
- $10.4 million for feasibility study and design funding for renovations to Edgewater, Tyler Heights, and Richard Henry Lee elementary schools, and $6.7 million in design funding for a new Crofton area high school.
- $10 million for prekindergarten and kindergarten additions at Odenton, Woodside, and North Glen elementary schools.
- $10 million for a classroom addition at Odenton Elementary School and gymnasium additions at Woodside and Millersville elementary schools.
- $7 million for open space enclosures at Chesapeake High School.
- $1.6 million for renovation work at the Carrie Weedon Science Center in Galesville, with the expectation that we will be able to open a prekindergarten program for 80 students in South County in the fall of 2017.
Details about Dr. Arlotto’s budget recommendation, a Budget in Brief, a video of his budget address, and the text of his remarks to the Board can be found here.
The Board will meet at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday to vote to go into closed session, during which time it will discuss confidential matters as permitted by the Maryland Open Meetings Act including, but not limited to, legal advice, personnel, and negotiations. Closed session is not open to the public. The general session of the meeting, which is open to the public, will begin at 10 a.m.
Public testimony on the Superintendent’s Recommended FY 2017 Operating and Capital Budget was taken at Board of Education public hearings on January 5 and 7, 2016. Accordingly, no public testimony on the recommendation will be taken at Wednesday’s Board meeting. If amendments are offered by Board Members, public comment will be taken on those amendments.
The Board’s requests will be forwarded to County Executive Steve Schuh, who will present a proposal to the County Council on May 2. The County Executive’s proposal will be considered by the County Council before it adopts its budgets no later than June 15. The Board may adjust operating budget funding within state categories before it approves a final school system budget by June 30.
The meeting will be the first for new board members Terry Gilleland and Maria Sasso. Gilleland was appointed by Governor Larry Hogan last week to succeed Debbie Ritchie as the District 31 representative on the Board and Sasso was appointed to succeed Solon Webb as the District 30 representative.
A complete agenda for the meeting accompanies this news release. More information on agenda items will be posted on the AACPS website, www.aacps.org, in the Board Docs section under the Board of Education tab.
The general session of Wednesday’s Board meeting will be broadcast live on AACPS-TV, which can be found on Channel 96 on Comcast and Broadstripe, and Channel 36 on Verizon. High definition broadcasts can be seen on Channel 996 on Comcast and Channel 496 on Broadstripe. Rebroadcasts are scheduled for 7:00 p.m. the day after the meeting and 2:00 p.m. on subsequent Sundays.
The meeting can also be viewed live on the Internet here.
Archived videos of Board meetings can be found online here.