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District OKs trim 2012-13 budget with seven fewer teachers



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June 27, 2012 - Goodrich- By a 7-0 vote on Monday night, the school board approved the 2012-13 budget.

The new budget reflects an estimated $16,558,969 in revenues with $16,710,664 in expenses. About $151,695 is needed from a fund equity account leaving $1,813,835 at the end of the 2013 fiscal year.. A fund equity balance of $1.9 million will be left for the 2012-2013 school year.

School officials said seven of the district's 109 teachers were laid off, along with 12 other support staff. Their last day will be June 30. The district will receive $6,966 in per-pupil funding from the state, up about $100 over last year. The district may also receive some relief from Lansing on the teachers retirement funding and a MESSA (Michigan Special Services Association) decrease of 3.46 percent. The wage and benefit concessions continue for administrators, secretaries and CMPT employees.

"We made about $1 million in reductions this past year—but it's the reoccurring costs that we have to get under control," said John Fazer, district superintendent. "Still we have not cut any programs."

The district student enrollment is expected to be about 2,121 down 20 students from the 2011 school year.

Earlier this year the district voted to close Schools of Choice from 7-12 grades and is now limiting enrollment to kindergarten through sixth grades.

"Each year we've been gaining about 30 students per year in Schools of Choice," said Fazer. "The change to close the door could potentially impact enrollment."

According to data released by the school district, for the past five years the number of SOC students have grown steadily—from 125 SOC students in the 2007-08 school year to 293 SOC students in the 2011-12 school year. Financially, the SOC program has been a boost to the district's sagging revenues. Based on the current $6,846 per student, the SOC is netting $2,005,878. Currently, SOC students had comprised about 12 percent of the total operational funding of the district based on revenues of about $16 million.

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