EASTCHESTER, N.Y. – The Bronxville Board of Education has adopted a $46.2 million representing a property tax levy increase of 1.65 percent, well below the state-mandated 1.9 percent cap.
In total, the board and Schools Superintendent David Quattrone managed to trim more than $100,000 from the initial budget to get it below the tax cap. The budget is now more than $97,000 under the tax levy cap.
Since its March 1 budget review meeting, the board managed to trim an additional $60,000 with a series of small trims. The proposed spending plan represents a year-to-year budget increase or nearly $1 million.
The Board of Education unanimously supported the proposed budget. There will be a public hearing where the board will hear from the community on May 8, and then residents will have the opportunity to vote on the schools budget on May 20.
This year’s budget focused on several key points, which included managing expected enrollment increases and addressing changes to curriculum that need to be addressed due to the new state Common Core Learning Standards.
In an effort to comply with the new learning standards, there will be rotating electives at the high school to limit the number of under-enrolled classes, and fifth-graders will spend more time developing science and technological skills.
To accommodate the enrollment increases, and to control class sizes, the district intends to add an extra second-grade section, bringing class size down to 21 students per class. A kindergarten teacher has also been added, as confirmed registrations (101) have exceeded the projected number of students (95).
The district, like many municipalities and schools across the county, continues to be affected by escalating state mandates. In total, more than 75 percent of the budget is dedicated to salaries and benefits, according to Superintendent of Schools David Quattrone.
“Salaries, benefits and contracted services alone account for the full increase in expenditures,” he said about the budget. “Mandated employer contributions to pensions remain a key driver.”