MACCRAY OKs 4-day school week in effort to save funds
CLARA CITY -- MACCRAY School District will introduce a four-day school week during the 2008-09 school year Following an in-depth look Monday at the district's declining financial situation, the board approved implementing a new school week with c...
CLARA CITY -- MACCRAY School District will introduce a four-day school week during the 2008-09 school year
Following an in-depth look Monday at the district's declining financial situation, the board approved implementing a new school week with classes held Tuesday through Friday.
Over the past few weeks, MACCRAY administrators have spoken at informational sessions in Maynard, Clara City and Raymond, promoting the financial benefits of a four-day school week.
Administrators, looking to trim $200,000 from the 2008-09 budget, said the district would save about $97,000 in transportation, energy and food services by switching to the four-day week.
However, Superintendent Greg Schmidt informed the board and about 40 citizens attending the meeting Monday that the district is "in a worse financial position than we thought we were."
Schmidt said by switching to the four-day week the district would actually only save $30,000 to $40,000, in large part due to increasing fuel prices.
He also indicated that a miscalculation was made in the projected revenue for 2008-09, citing inaccessible reserve revenues that were counted twice.
Despite this, board members said the four-day week was a starting point toward balancing the budget.
"We can only give it a try and see how it goes," said board chairman Randy Janssen, citing a 55-name petition the board received in favor of the four-day week.
The council approved the motion 7-0 and instructed, as a consensus, the administration create a criteria for judging how the new school week will be structured.
The council scheduled additional meetings for 8 p.m. Friday and Monday to debate other cuts that may affect staff.
According to previous Tribune reports, MACCRAY's school day will increase by one hour. The four-day schedule will give students 26 Mondays off out of 36 school weeks. The remaining Mondays will make up school days lost to holidays, such as Thanksgiving, and other events.
The MACCRAY School Board first discussed switching to a four-day school week in April 2005. The board voted against it at that point.
Last year, the School Board made $800,000 in budget cuts, including closing Clara City's junior high school. The closing saved an estimated $80,000 a year.