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From the Desk of Dr. Charles Murphy

The 2011-12 budgeting process is coming to a close. From the beginning, the Board’s goal was to develop a budget that continues to support all of the quality educational programs and services in Island Trees, and at the same time, take into account the economic concerns expressed by many residents.   

To balance these objectives was by no means an easy task given the many formidable obstacles the Board faced along the way. In truth, the challenges presented have been the most difficult in decades. The Board labored over every budget line, examined staffing, and sought creative measures to meet the needs of all of their constituents. 

 A few questions: Will this budget address academic needs? Yes, we have improved our science department, added new courses for college bound students, and continue to meet the needs of all learners. 

Will there be reductions in staffing? Yes, by maximizing our efficiencies and minimizing the impact on students.  

Will there be new additions? Yes, we will retool our technology hardware in our schools through a district-wide virtualization initiative and budget for capital improvements to our physical plant. 

In closing, I salute the Board for their collaborative approach, hard work and perseverance during budget development. I believe the Board achieved their goals for the school community. Although the budget will not be finalized for several more weeks, the budget-to-budget expenditures increased by .52 percent, less than 1 percent and tax levy by 2.99 percent. 

The Board of Education plans to formally adopt the proposal on Wednesday, April 13, 2011. After that, the next step in the process is the community vote on Tuesday, May 17, 2011. If you have any questions, please contact me.