Local By Kendra Baker New Fairfield residents question legality of high school... Local By Kendra Baker New plans proposed for New Fairfield High School building project. “We have people in our community that cannot pay for their groceries,” said school board member Liz Floegel, who made a motion to rescind the board’s previous vote on the 2020-21 budget. Executive orders from Governor Ned Lamont give the selectmen and finance board budget-making authority normally wielded by voters at the Annual Town Meeting and the the budget referendum. Meeting virtually on Monday evening, the Ridgefield Board of Education approved a motion to adopt the revised 2020-21 Ridgefield Public Schools Operating Budget … See the top reviewed local home builders in Ridgefield, CT on Houzz. To meet the reduction, Superintendent of Schools Susie Da Silva had presented several recommendations at the board of education’s previous meeting May 26. The vote came during a Board of Eucation meeting open to the public on Zoom. The vaccination program for the State of Connecticut is currently underway. But primarily due to raises and other contracted salary obligations, the new budget required cost cutting — a 2.96% increase would have been needed to prevent the schools from adding new positions while allowing them to maintain current operations. Board of Education Corner; Ridgefield Public Schools; ALL 2020-21 BOE Budget related meetings . 2020-21 BOE Budget Meetings; Ridgefield Public School calendar; Project Resilience calendar; Community Partners; Resources. 2020-21 BOE Budget Meetings; Ridgefield Public School calendar; Project Resilience calendar; Community Partners; Resources. Superintendent of Schools Dr. Susie Da Silva announced that Dr. Wes DeSantis will be the new Director of Education Technology. “We have to be flexible. Floegel thought there were areas where the schools could reduce spending that had been planned before the coronavirus brought both local and national economies to a near standstill. The State has designated priority groups (or tiers) for each group to be vaccinated. Ridgefield school board declines to reduce its budget request April 30, 2020 Updated: April 30, 2020 3 p.m. Without those three additions, just carrying forward the current operations with contracted salary and other non-discretionary cost increases, would mean a budget with about a 2.96 percent increase — one percent less — she said. “I don’t believe it’s time for us to jump ahead of them, and assume a 40% unemployment rate and bankrupt state. “If you want to win this budget battle you’ve got to do it as a team,” he said. Ridgefield’s school system now has a clearer idea. Welcome Welcome to the Internet home of the Ridgefield Public Schools. Sjoberg, Drake, Steckler, Holz and chairwoman Stamatis opposed the motion. Jan 13: BOE Conference Room in Town Annex: Elementary and Middle School Budgets. Board member Nora Gaydos spoke “on behalf of the 5,000 children who can’t speak for themselves.” She was wary of reducing the budget request. Other board members questioned the idea of rescinding their budget request in advance of action by the selectmen and Board of Finance. Ridgefield silent at school budget hearing; increase now below four percent. Published 5:49 pm EST, Thursday, February 13, 2020 But McEvoy also appeared to be alluding to long-standing discussions that, in recnet years, have touched on the controversial idea of closing one of the town’s six elementary schools. “We’re not a corporation,” she said. “As a reminder, 80% of our budget is people,” she said. “We currently have a 3.96% increase approved. Jan 15: BOE … … New School Superintendent Susie Da Silva noted that the budget request for a 3.96% increase that she had inherited from Interim Superintendent JeanAnn Paddyfote had called for expanded services and personnel in three areas: the addition off three math coaches, another social worker at the high school, and a director of security position to oversee all aspects of school security. But they were reluctant to preemptively reduce their $102 million budget request. The breakdown of the budget is illustrated in the pie chart below and can be found in the Summary Budget Analysis by Object spreadsheet in the Appendix. Talk of soaring unemployment and a need for collaboration and flexibility in difficult times did not translate into a Board of Education majority willing to rescind it’s request for a 3.96 percent budget increase next year. Ridgefield is a beautiful, colonial town of approximately 24,300 people in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains in central Fairfield County, Connecticut. We do expect that to be changed by the Board of Finance,” he said. “We haven’t been 5,000 students for many many years,” McEvoy said. Floegel said the state of Connecticut could potentially experience 400,000 unemployment claims. We’ve looked at every option we can, and we’re starting to create those scenarios,” Da Silva said. The Ridgefield Public Schools Board of Education is proud of its educational program and the high standards set for our students, faculty, and support staff and is committed to improving communication between the school system and the residents of Ridgefield. “Our state is already on the brink of bankruptcy.”. At this point, they’re not open to that discussion.”, She added, “I look to the board to give us ideas of things we haven’t considered.”. Consistency across all of our six elementary schools was an intentional outcome in this process.”, Board of education approves school budget, Ridgefield starts vaccinations, but a ways to go, Ridgefield Food Pantry receiver of $1,750 donation, Freemasons celebrate 50-year members in Ridgefield, Ms President US receiver of $4,200 grant from foundation, Ms President US program initiative kicks off its fourth year, Yoga Nidra (Yogic Sleep): On Ridgefield Continuing Education schedule, Ridgefield boy learns piano, pens possible holiday classic, ESL, GED, Adult Basic Education classes starting, Bridge: Ridgefield Continuing Education classes set to start, Police: Woman robbed liquor store, tried to sell stolen booze on Snapchat, ‘Tremendously important to get the vaccine distributed’: Ridgefield starts vaccinations, Police: Fitness trainer charged with sexually assaulting teen in Bridgeport, Ridgefield High School reports 6 new COVID cases, Police: Darien man, 20, tried to use BB gun for target practice in Woodland Park, Police: 2 CT residents charged in Capitol protest. “We’re almost an elementary school less than that. The vaccination program for the State of Connecticut is currently underway. Dr. DeSantis will be a familiar name to many RPS families as he is the current K-12 STEM Supervisor and before that a beloved Ridgefield High School physics teacher, coach of the electric car race team, and founding director of the annual cardboard boat race. Absentee Ballots cannot be mailed for this type of Referendum and must be obtained in person in the Town Clerk's office. Town of Ridgefield Information on State-Local COVID-19 Vaccination Program. That’s not our job.”. “These discussions have not only involved art education, but all essentials (specials). “We’ve had two meetings since this started, and they’ve been trivial, we haven’t discussed the hard things... “We need to look at the big bets. “The teachers union, they’re not open for that conversation, at least at this point,” Da Silva said. These include all schools (except Scotland Elementary School) being flat-funded to 2019-20; reductions in the technology and curriculum departments; deferred purchases of furniture and fixtures; and athletics funded at 2019-20 budget GF (General Fund) contribution amounts except for contractual obligations. Contracted pay raises are a big part of the school board’s annual budget increase, and Da Silva said the administration had begun talking to union groups about potential adjustments to contracts — but hadn’t gotten very far with the system’s largest and most expensive union group, teachers. Additional savings will come from reduced operating budgets. “We want to partner with the town. “Our kids are going to be hurting too,” said Rachel Ruggeri. Prior to the coronavirus epidemic, the Board of Education had approved a $102-million budget (3.96% increase from 2019-20) that created several new positions and increased education spending by nearly $4 million for the 2020-21 school year. Absentee ballots are now available for the May 9, 2017 Budget Referendum. “The tough choices need to be made.”, Ridgefield school board declines to reduce its budget request, Ridgefield starts vaccinations, but a ways to go, Ridgefield Food Pantry receiver of $1,750 donation, Freemasons celebrate 50-year members in Ridgefield, Ms President US receiver of $4,200 grant from foundation, Ms President US program initiative kicks off its fourth year, Yoga Nidra (Yogic Sleep): On Ridgefield Continuing Education schedule, Ridgefield boy learns piano, pens possible holiday classic, ESL, GED, Adult Basic Education classes starting, Bridge: Ridgefield Continuing Education classes set to start, Police: Woman robbed liquor store, tried to sell stolen booze on Snapchat, ‘Tremendously important to get the vaccine distributed’: Ridgefield starts vaccinations, Police: Fitness trainer charged with sexually assaulting teen in Bridgeport, Ridgefield High School reports 6 new COVID cases, Police: Darien man, 20, tried to use BB gun for target practice in Woodland Park, Police: 2 CT residents charged in Capitol protest. “I don’t think it’s a very productive time to start attacking members of our own board,” said Carina Drake. “But none of them look great.”. “It is important to note that our elementary principals and Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction were involved in the discussions far before this budget year,” Da Silva wrote in a memo sent to the board that was discussed Monday night. “That’s the path of least resistance, not necessarily the best path,” she added. #Ridgefield BOE Public Hearing on Saturday: Superintendent’s FY 2020-21 Proposed Operating Budget @Ridgefieldps RIDGEFIELD, CT — Ridgefield Schools Superintendent Karen Baldwin proposed a 4.83 percent operating budget increase for the next school year. “...We are fiscally accountable for the school system. Together, the nine schools that comprise our district provide a safe, empowering learning environment for just under 5,000 pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade students in Ridgefield, Connecticut. Ridgefield is a beautiful, colonial town of approximately 24,300 people in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains in central Fairfield County, Connecticut. At the end of the board’s discussion of the 2020-21 budget, McEvoy made a point about his colleagues referring to the school system’s enrollment as 5,000 students, despite a continuing decline. “Each elementary school should have its own art teacher.”. By Macklin Reid. McEvoy’s initial questioning of “board leadership” — which appeared to be addressed to chairwoman Margaret Stamatis — drew a rebuke. Search 4,862 Ridgefield, CT home builders to find the best home builder for your project. We need to look at the things we’ve been putting off for a decade,” McEvoy said. RIDGEFIELD PUBLIC SCHOOLS 8 RIDGEFIELD PUBLIC SCHOOLS BUDGET FY 2016-17 The district’s operating budget for FY 2016-17 is $90,374,229, or an increase in spending of $4,295,864 or 4.99%. Ridgefield Honors Veterans, Police Officer Seibert Speaks, Evelyn Carr Sings, Thanks To American Legion Post 78! I’ve never seen something like this.”. “After that we’re looking at everything,” Da Silva said. Ms. Gillette comes to Ridgefield from the Darien Public Schools, where she has worked since 2013, first as a Literacy . “While we may not have 40 percent unemployment, it’s over 20 percent,” she said. RIDGEFIELD, CT — The Board of Finance approved both the 2019-20 school and town budgets on Tuesday night, opening the door for a 1.24% tax increase, … The Ridgefield Council of PTAs, with 9 local-unit PTAs, is the umbrella organization for the PTAs in Ridgefield. The proposed $98.3 million budget is an increase of 3.43 percent over the $95 million voters approved for the 2018-19 school year last May. The final total is an increase of $1,718,391 (1.75%) from the 2019-20 school budget. Title: Date: Venue: 2020 Superintendent's Proposed Budget Presentation. “Once that work was completed, the team calibrated across all schools, followed by the creation of a schedule for all essentials. Ridgefield was first settled by English colonists from Norwalk and Milford in 1708, when a group of settlers purchased land from Chief Catoonah of the Ramapo tribe. “I’m against this reduction,” Ruggeri said. Budget Referendum to take place at Yanity Gym, 60 Prospect Street, Ridgefield CT from 6 am to 8 pm. The path of least resistance would be to maintain a budget at 2.96,” she said. Based on discussion at last week’s tri-board meeting, school officials seemed to regard a reduction in the 2020-21 school budget as very likely to be handed down by the selectmen and finance board. (Executive orders from Governor Ned Lamont gave finance boards the final say on 2020-21 school budgets). “Obviously we want to take care of the children — they’re why we’re here,” said board member Ken Sjoberg. “Our primary responsibility here is the students in our care,” said Jonathan Steckler. Board member Sean McEvoy — who eventually seconded Floegel’s motion to rescind the previous budget vote — argued that the board should be more aggressive about reworking the budget during the coronavirus crisis. Board of Education Corner; Ridgefield Public Schools ; Ridgefield Council of PTAs . Ridgefield Board of Ed Begins Budget Review - Ridgefield, CT - The 2013-2014 Ridgefield school budget, which was unveiled by Superintendent of School… “...if we’re forced to have a 0% increase, we can wish we have all the science and math support we want, but we’re not going to have that... “If we have to make those deep cuts, then those deep cuts have to be made,” he said. A review by the Connecticut Mirror shows that a cut to major school grants in 2017 coincided with a big drop in school staffing levels – even after adjusting for declining enrollment. “We are at the brink of economic devastation,” she said. With the coronavirus epidemic setting off an economic free-fall across the country, the question wasn’t going to be how much school districts could add to their 2020-21 budgets but rather how much they would need to remove. Sojberg summed up the situation going forward. “We are truly going line by line. Floegel’s motion to rescind the board’s request for a $102 million budget next year was voted down 7-to-2 Monday night, April 27. “School is shut down till September. [citation needed] The town was incorporated under a royal charter from the Connecticut General Assembly issued in 1709.Ridgefield was descriptively named. “There will be cuts at all levels. Town of Ridgefield Information on State-Local COVID-19 Vaccination Program. 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