Superintendent’s budget request posted on school website

How the proposed 2014-15 school budget is apportioned.

NORWALK, Conn. — The Norwalk Public Schools 2014-15 operating budget as requested by Superintendent Manny Rivera has been posted on the NPS website, and the operating budget dollar figure – $168,118,385, a $5,846,521 increase – 3.6 percent – over the 2013-14 budget – is the same as it was in Rivera’s initial pass in mid-December.

Also included on the NPS site is the capital budget request seeking $5,797,450, including $2,358,200 for Common Core implementation and $1,725,000 for enhancements to school security. The request includes almost $1M for district technology and the remainder for Rowayton construction ($380,000) and district-wide paving and concrete work ($365,000).

The operating budget increase includes $5,102,793 in salaries and benefits, including those mandated by an arbitration decision that froze Norwalk Federation of Teachers salaries in the year.

The five-year capital plan includes continuing requests totaling more $1M annually for technology and an average of about $300,000 a year for paving and concrete work.

The superintendent’s budget request will be formally presented to the Board of Education at its Jan. 7 meeting. That meeting is expected to focus solely on the budget.

After the first draft was presented Dec. 10, NancyOnNorwalk sent Rivera a list of questions, which he declined to answer.

“I made a presentation to the Board Finance Committee,” he said in an email. “There were questions raised which we are responding to. I will then make my formal presentation to the full Board next Tuesday, and there will be more questions raised. We will develop our responses for the Board.”

That meeting was snowed out, and the presentation was pushed to Jan. 7.

The Board of Education must sign off on the budget request before it goes to city Finance Director Tom Hamilton, who is expected to meet with the board to discuss the request, then submit it with his own recommendations to the Board of Estimate and Taxation at its Feb. 10 meeting, and to the Common Council at its Feb. 11 meeting. The BET and the council hold meetings to discuss the entire city budget and, by the end of February, the council sets a preliminary city budget cap. The BET works with the various city departments before presenting its own recommendations for the budget to the council in April, and the council may then adjust the cap.


11 responses to “Superintendent’s budget request posted on school website”

  1. More of the Same

    Before we had scores of $250,000 administrators, how did society ever manage to build things like railways, supersonic jets, interstate highways, semiconductors, etc…
    I know, its for the kids….so just shut up and keep feeding the beast.

  2. Lifelong Teacher

    Please tell us who these are. Norwalk only has one person anywhere near that amount , and that is Dr. Rivera.

  3. More of the Same

    Society > Norwalk. Surely a lifelong teacher can comprehend this. The point is, as a country we spend trillions on school administrators that we used to spend on building and discovering things. Paper pushers are not what made this a great civilization.
    These same folks who failed us with NCLB now want us to believe Common Core is the silver bullet to our problems. When that fails in ten years, will we be trusting the same people to implement yet another scam? God help the children who’s families can’t help themselves.

  4. Lifelong Teacher

    Cannot argue one thing in your second paragraph. Not a one.

  5. Sjur Soleng

    Common Core will break the backs of current and future tax payers.

  6. K.D.L.

    Can’t and won’t defend the implementation of common core standards, how can we? The jury hasn’t even begun deliberations on that yet. Implementation is underway so its in the context of judging its implementation is premature to say the least. However, it is a step forward and completely rational to implement a national standardised curriculum so that all students from all backgrounds, all geographic and demographics are presented the same information and are all scored more fairly across the board. Don’t recall the costs that were presented a while back but Dadonna stated in the overall picture the costs of implementation, spread over a period of a few school years, was not significant in a district of this size. Thought about what he said and did some research and he appears to be correct. To be clear, no one, no one, accept critics that may either be, not as informed as they should be or, those with their own agendas but other than those critics, no one is saying common core is any kind of a silver bullet. It’s about fair and balanced curriculum and testing. To lower the inequality, in results, much has to be done and not only with the schools. Take a good look around. Is this the democratic capitalistic society we want? Can we all awaken and work together to fix all the stuff that is obviously broken? Can we leave this earth just a little bit better than we inherited it? If not, why not? As grandma used to say, “duck do”. Yes you can, yes we can, now we all must get busy and temper the time wasting tantrums. Your time, our time is limited. A mind, is such a terrible asset to waste. We all CAN do better.

  7. More of the Same

    @KDL. Everything you say here is what they said about NCLB a little over a decade ago now and trust me that left huge holes in our budget. And don’t sneeze at the capital outlays here of $2 million. I’m sure that is a tiny down payment on this new gimmick, which hopefully I am wrong but it already sounds like the same dog with a new set of fleas.

  8. Lifelong Teacher

    NCLB was like mom, apple pie, or the American flag: how could anyone say they were against it? Leaving no child behind sounded like such a noble idea. CCSS, I’m afraid, might be more of the same. Designed by non educators, hastily adopted, and in CT, poorly implemented. Time will tell.

    Anyone who thinks that this will eliminate inequality in education is fooling themselves.

    In the meantime, like its predecessor, CCSS is an opportunity for publishers, professional developers, and others to make a big buck.

  9. More of the Same

    @Lifelong. Let’s hope we are wrong, but following the money shows that this is the same folks who did bring us NCLB. Makes you wonder if they already have the next buzzword in development waiting to yet separate us from more of our money. Money that could actually be used to educate children, sadly.

  10. anonymous

    @lifelong, Educators are who got us into the achievement gap mess and the need for NCLB in the first place because they weren’t watching their end product, the kids. Not so sure they are the ones who know how to get us out since it seems if they did, they would have done so by now? Using poverty as an excuse is just that, an excuse. If public schools can’t do the job without breaking the back of taxpayers, move out of the way then.

  11. marjoriem

    I just read this on Norwalk Speaks and realized how appropriate it is for this thread, so I copied it. It’s a quote from research done and published. Perhaps this will end the blame game on educators?

    Quoted from NPR: In the early 1990s, a team of researchers decided to follow about 40 volunteer families — some poor, some middle class, some rich — during the first three years of their new children’s lives. Every month, the researchers recorded an hour of sound from the families’ homes. Later in the lab, the team listened back and painstakingly tallied up the total number of words spoken in each household.

    What they found came to be known as the “word gap.”

    It turned out, by the age of 3, children born into low-income families heard roughly 30 million fewer words than their more affluent peers.

    Research since then has revealed that the “word gap” factors into a compounding achievement gap between the poor and the better-off in school and life. The “word gap” remains as wide today, and new research from Stanford University found an intellectual processing gap appearing as early as 18 months.

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