February 22, 2013
Board approves revised budget for next school year
Budget reinstates some counseling positions
The Anchorage School Board approved on second reading the district's FY 2013-14 operating budget last night. The budget includes an amendment to the proposed staffing levels for high school counseling services.
The board supported Superintendent Jim Browder's recommendation to add eight counselor positions back into next year's budget, one at each comprehensive high school. In order to offset the cost for the eight positions, the pupil-teacher ratio for grades 7-12 will remain the same next school year, rather than being rounded down as originally proposed.
Browder said the additional positions will allow guidance services to continue to provide the career counseling, graduation support, scholarship assistance, mentoring opportunities and support for academic improvement that the board, students and parents expect.
"Reinstating a guidance position in the comprehensive high schools will give principals flexibility to deliver the services that we felt we were going to lose," said Browder. "I had several discussions with principals and other senior leaders within the district and together we felt this would provide a smoother, softer landing at a time when we are making significant reductions to the guidance departments in our schools."
The district's FY 2013-14 Financial Plan will be submitted to the Anchorage Assembly March 4 and taken up for public hearing and assembly approval on March 26. The budget may be altered after that date based on an education funding bill signed into law by Governor Sean Parnell.
The complete budget proposal is available online at www.asdk12.org/budget.