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Ticonderoga school budget calls for cuts

25 positions eliminated or reduced

Facing a $540,000 budget gap, the Ticonderoga Central School board of education was forced to make tough decisions when preparing the proposed 2013-14 budget. The spending plan calls for the elimination of 11.6 full-time equivalent jobs and cuts in academic programs.

Facing a $540,000 budget gap, the Ticonderoga Central School board of education was forced to make tough decisions when preparing the proposed 2013-14 budget. The spending plan calls for the elimination of 11.6 full-time equivalent jobs and cuts in academic programs. Photo by Nancy Frasier.

— Facing a $540,000 budget gap, the Ticonderoga Central School board of education was forced to make tough decisions when preparing the proposed 2013-14 budget.

The spending plan calls for the elimination of 11.6 full-time equivalent jobs and cuts in academic programs.

“We’ll maintain everything required for an advanced Regents diploma,” Superintendent John McDonald said. “We’ll have to cut some electives, cut some college-level classes, make cuts in music and art.”

The proposed 2013-14 budget totals $18,514,628. That’s an increase of $664,805 — 3.73 percent — from the current spending plan of $17,849,823.

The proposed 2013-14 tax levy is $10,706,316. That’s an increase of $389,584 — 3.78 percent — from the $10,316,732 raised by taxes in 2012-13. That meets the state-mandated tax cap.

Voting on the proposed budget will be Tuesday, May 21, noon to 8 p.m. at the Ticonderoga High School lobby and at the Hague Community Center.

To reach the state-mandated tax cap the proposed budget cuts full-time math, science, English and teacher aide positions. It also cuts 4.5 teaching assistant jobs. Half-time computer aide, English and physical education positions are eliminated. It reduces full-time English and foreign language jobs to half time. Other positions in guidance, home and careers, music, art, business, technology, English and math are cut by 20 percent as is a social worker job.

In all, 25 employees are being cut to some degree.

Also eliminated is a librarian position. That person is retiring and will not be replaced.

“I’m concerned that we’re losing good people,” McDonald said. “Typically cuts affect young staff. They’re people with new, fresh ideas and enthusiasm. We need their contributions.

“There is nobody on the list (of cuts) I don’t value,” he added. “They’ll all very professional, dedicated to working for our kids.”

Five years ago Ticonderoga Central School has 120 teachers. Today there are 100. Next year there will be 88.5.

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