Enrollment Conditions Shape Upcoming Budget

November 19, 2002
A series of stark conditions and other factors -- including significant demographic changes among students and rising costs for increased enrollment and operating expenses -- will affect the upcoming recommendations for next year's operating budget for the Montgomery County Public Schools, according to a new report by Dr. Jerry D. Weast, superintendent of schools, to the Board of Education yesterday [Monday, November 18].

The superintendent identified increased student poverty and the rising number of English language learners as two or the most significant conditions affecting the ongoing instructional reform efforts and other elements of the school system's plans for the future.

The need for textbooks has emerged as a major issue, not only for students who need English language texts to bring home but also for the successful implementation of the curricular reforms in classrooms. Other factors include maintaining current services, negotiated salary improvements for employees, health insurance costs for both current staff and retirees, and other operating expenses.

Additional budget cuts are predicted by the superintendent, who noted that the system already has cut $51.4 million in the last three years, in addition to last year's freeze that saved $10 million. Another freeze is under way this year.

The budget recommendations will be presented publicly on Wednesday, December 11, beginning at 7:30 p.m. at Montgomery Blair High School.

The full report from the superintendent to the Board of Education is attached as a PDF file and available online at the link below.

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