Rochester school board prepares to make ‘budget adjustments’
Rochester, MN (KROC AM News) – Rochester Public Schools are considering a wide range of choices as they look for ways to deal with what they say is a projected black hole in their checkbook.
And RPS wants to hear from the public before final decisions on what to do about the problem are made.
According to a news release, RPS faces a projected operating budget shortfall of up to $23 million for the 2022-23 school year. Executive Director of Finance John Carlson outlined proposed cuts totaling $7 million to the school board on Jan. 25.
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RPS has sent out surveys to staff, students, families and community members and will be accepting responses until February 3. The results will be reviewed by the board at its February 8 meeting before budget decisions are made.
RPS says there are a number of reasons for the financial troubles it is facing – and it is considering a number of options to deal with them. Among them: accounting changes that could include the use of federal Covid funds and staff cuts.
Some options that will be explored in more detail include:
- Change setpoints for heating and cooling
- Close a small primary school and consolidate with another school.
- Eliminate certain athletic sports
- Further reduce or eliminate pedagogical coaching
- Reduce administrative positions
A summary of these cuts, along with a video explaining the process and the budget cut options available, are all available at rocksterschools.org/budget.