Revised 2/7/2019

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Ledyard Board of Education Budget

Frequently Asked Questions

Thank you for visiting the Ledyard Board of Education Budget FAQ page for the 2019-2020 budget development process.  Each year elected officials, team members, and members of our community present questions related to our budget. These questions can be financial in nature, or related to policy or operations. It is our goal to respond in a public forum, as transparently, and comprehensively as possible. If at any time the budget information or this FAQ document does not answer your questions, or if you have additional questions, please feel free to contact me at jhartling@ledyard.net. This document will be updated as new questions of public value are presented with revision dates recorded in the document header.

Sincerely,

Jason S. Harting

Superintendent

Questions:

  1. We continue to hear about declining enrollment, is the district reducing staff to meet this decline?

Up until this school year, Ledyard had seen an enrollment decline like most districts across the State.  However, in this current school year, while the staffing remained flat,  the district saw an enrollment increase. The 2018-2019 enrollment forecast was 2418 - as of Dec 31, we have 2440 students enrolled.  

  1. What has been the change in high school enrollment?

As has been the case with all of our schools enrollment has declined over the past several years. Enrollment at LHS has dropped 28.33% since 2007 with a staff reduction of 20.78%. Please note we utilized CTSDE data to validate the chart below.

  1. What are we doing to reduce our outgoing magnet numbers and increase the incoming?
    School choice is an option in Southeastern CT and in some cases represents an opportunity for a learning experience that is not provided in Ledyard. We continue to work at engaging and informing our community and new residents about Ledyard Public Schools. This same engagement is expanded to those communities that have agreements to send tuition or AgriScience students to Ledyard High School.

  1. How much do we spend on magnet school students going to other districts?

For the 138 students attending magnet schools in 2018-19, it is estimated that the cost to Ledyard will be about $773,282. This cost is broken down into multiple budget lines including tuition expenses, special education expenses and an allocation of district overhead expenses.

5.     I would like to know more about the elementary staffing in regards to unified arts - Art, PE, Music. Does a plan exist yet?  How will staff be shared or not shared?  Will instrumental music make a come back perhaps for grades 4 & 5?


DMGroup is looking at staffing models for Art and PE to assist us in determining how best to utilize existing staff. Right now we have full time allocations at both sites, with GHS having 2.0 in Art and PE (subject to change with final need). While I would hope not to have to share between buildings, enrollment will dictate that final decision.

We recently met with the music teachers and discussed some possible ideas. One of those potential ideas is to offer instrumental music for 4th and 5th grade students without having to add additional staff.

Our initial thinking is the following:

GHS - 1 FTE Vocal/General

GF/JWL - 1 FTE Vocal/General

1 FTE Vocal/General/Instrumental (This staff member would teach general music at GHS and instrumental music at GHS and JWL)

LMS- 1 FTE Vocal General and 1 FTE Instrumental

LHS- Vocal/General and 1 FTE Instrumental

6.    I would like to know the plan for the library at each elementary school.  Will all children have access to a full time Library Media Specialist?  Will there be a full time Library Media Specialist at GHS and a full time Library Media Specialist at the campus?  

Under this plan GHS and the GFS/JWL would continue to share a Library Media Specialist. In the past few years, the Library Media Specialist has worked with students in grades 4-6 between 3 schools, while a paraprofessional has covered K-3 classes. By moving the 6th grade students to LMS, which is currently eight sections of students, the need for a Library Media Specialist is critical at LMS.  DMG is looking at how to best staff Library Media at the elementary level for: 7 sections of 3rd, 8 sections of 4th, and 7 sections of 5th grade.

7.    Have we begun to envision a 5th "special" for the elementary level?  A few years ago kids had computer lab - allowing their teachers planning time.  That went away.  Is there a plan for next year?  Or maybe a wish/hope for the future?


Students in grades 3-5 have 1:1 access to Chromebooks and do not  use the computer lab often. This allows technology to be meaningfully embedded in daily instruction and not taught in isolation one time a week. Going forward part of the Instructional Technology Team’s role will be to more fully integrate the appropriate technology skills into the curriculum k-12.

8.    With the return of the Library Media Specialist at LMS - will library para hours remain the same at LHS and LMS?

In the final proposal we did not reduce the Library Para hours at LMS or LHS.

9.    How does per pupil spending in Ledyard compared to the surrounding communities in SE CT?

        Ledyard operates a high quality program at a cost lower than the surrounding communities. Recent analysis of CT SDE data shows the following comparison for 17-18: