New Haven Public Schools will have to figure out where it can cut $4.5 million dollars for the 2014-15 fiscal year.
“When we started this budget process, we request $5.3 million from the city in order to plug the gap to our operations,” Superintendent of Schools Garth Harries said.
The school district did get about $800,000 from the state, but the rest of the budget was flat-funded, leaving the district with a $4.5 million gap.
“We will look to make sure that the cuts happen as far away from direct services as possible. Obviously, this is why we're all here, to make sure the kids learn, and kids need those experiences, so we'll look outside of classrooms, we'll look at Central Office,” Harries said.
They'll also be looking at under-enrolled classrooms, similar to last year's closure of middle school classrooms at two schools. Closing two daycares at the end of this month is already providing some savings. The district also ended the Renaissance contract at Roberto Clemente, which will also save money. The state has given money toward the school construction project, but other than that funding, it doesn't look like any additional state funds are available right now.
“Unfortunately, the budget was passed by the Board of Aldermen after the State had passed the budget already, and as a result, the Board made the decision to reduce the funding to the New Haven Board of Education,” said New Haven Mayor Toni Harp.