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School Budget: Concern About Program Cuts and Class Size

Some suggest Shrewsbury has been on a 'downward slope.'

Increasing class size and program cuts are a major concern of teachers, residents and parents, some of which who voiced these concerns at a school committee meeting on Feb. 13, as reported by the Community Advocate.

One woman, a mother of three in the school system, said that Shrewsbury public schools have "continued to be on a downward slope."

Superintendent of Schools Joe Sawyer last month presented his recommended school budget for FY2014 (which can be found here), which, at $54.28 million represents an 8.5 percent increase over FY2013. The budget includes the addition of 45.5 full-time equivalent positions, including 21.5 classroom teaching positions, four administrative positions, 6.4 special education professionals, 9.0 special education paraprofessionals, one technology support position and 3.6 part time receptionists.

While many addressed class size, other issues were addressed, and Sawyer reiterated the factors that shaped his proposals, said the Community Advocate. 

George Sedares February 15, 2013 at 04:04 PM
Just when do we get to a more realistic goal of level funding ? Seems there is a lack of comprehension that continues- NO means No ! They keep doctoring the staffing year after year. How many were on the payroll in 2010, 2011, 2012 and projected for 2013 and 2014 ? On paper they layoff people and yet they reappear the end of the year and the staffing becomes a fairy tail ! !
Derek Pizzuto April 21, 2013 at 01:24 PM
This response is so far off the mark to be laughable. As a teacher in Shrewsbury, I find it disappointing that this sort of untruth continues to be perpetuated. We at the middle school have lost 2 full teams of teachers - class size across the board is 30 students per section. Our allied arts (gym, shop, art, etc) teachers have a student load of NINE HUNDRED kids per year. We have one councilor for 450 kids. Computer classes have been eliminated, there is no late bus (only kids who live in walking distance or who have parents at home can stay for extra help), and we have cut out most "extras" - we had a great anti-bullying program and a career outreach day, both are gone. Take a look at the stats - I would NEVER live in Shrewsbury; it masks low taxes behind an unreasonable burden on parents. The sense of community is dying. Property values will drop after the next round of cuts, once any who can will send their kids elsewhere.
Mom of 2 teens April 26, 2013 at 03:04 PM
thank you mr. P for articulating what so many parents know but other residents of SHrewsbury fail to acknowledge. If all parents would pay attention, get involved and vote, there might be a chance to turn this around. But after 7 years of fees, blinders and shoulder shrugging, it's unlikely to change soon. Property values will decline and that will cost homeowners a LOT more than a minor property tax increase of a couple of percentage points. It's so sad to see excellent schools be cut to the bone and a fantastic program further eroded year after year!

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