Proposal calls for seven new teachers and anticipates 150 new students

| 21 Feb 2012 | 10:58

    CENTRAL VALLEY-Schools Superintendent Frank Moscati and his staff have proposed a 2005-2006 spending plan that would increase spending by 6.8 percent and taxes by about 6.4 percent. The $119.9 million superintendent's preliminary proposal includes the equivalent of seven full-time teachers, including two for English as a second language, one for special education and an assistant elementary school principal. The budget also anticipates that the district, which already has about 7,500 students, will see another 150 enter its classrooms in September. This trend, evident by the housing development in Monroe and Woodbury, has seen the addition of about 180 students in each of the last several years, said John Staiger, the assistant superintendent for business. The current 2004-05 budget totals $112.2 million. The spending proposal does not call for any new construction or expansion of facilities, although school officials acknowledge that elementary schools are already crowded. The largest increases in proposed spending come from benefits for the district's employees and fuel costs. There is a separate $1.79 million bond to buy 19 new buses that are more efficient. The state reimburses about half of those costs. So what do you get for your tax dollars? By state standards, 74 percent of the 475 students who took Regents exams in 2003 graduated with a Regents diploma, the highest rate in Orange County. Warwick Valley had the second highest at 71 percent. Less than 2 percent of the 542 students who were tested in fourth-grade English proficiency needed what the state describes as serious academic help. Less than 1 percent of those students tested in Math needed serious help. The same was true for fourth-grade science and fifth-grade social studies. Eighth grade scores for Math and Science had similar results - less than 1 percent of the more than 600 students who were tested graded out as needing serious help. The proposal will be reviewed by the School Board on April 3. That will be followed by a public hearing on May 4 and then a vote on May 17. The district draws students from Monroe, Woodbury, Chester, Tuxedo and Blooming Grove. Tax rates won't be fixed for some time, a process that includes how much the state will contribute. The current rates per $1,000 of assessed valuation are: Monroe - $99.61 per $1,000; Woodbury - $47.31 per $1,000; Chester - $106.28; Tuxedo - $108.15; and Blooming Grove - $106.93.