In 2013 a Referendum was approved by voters to either replace or renovate 11 schools and the school administration building. While initially the projects were spread over a nine-year period, the projects now extend only seven years.
“Our school projects are remaining the same, the schools in the original CIP (Capital Improvement Program) that were in years 8 and 9 have been moved up to be completed in the 7 year time frame. The condensing of projects does not put any projects in our area further behind,” said Carrie Coyner, Bermuda District School Board Member. “My focus right now is ensuring that all of our school projects stay on schedule and on budget. The revised CIP from a 9 year to a 7 year plan has not been voted on by the School Board or BOS, so the changes to the scheduling as proposed will not happen until the budget votes take place [in January].
The Chesterfield County School Board will be focusing on the budget early on after January. Coyner said, “The overall school budget begins with the last fiscal budget, then we add increased expenses that we consider “have-to’s” then we ask for items we believe we need on top of that. Our budget was built this way for the last two years as we started the “5 Year Budget Plan” for schools. It has been very effective, so I believe we will continue budget planning this way.
Coyner added that there could be enough in the budget this year to address pupil-teacher ratio (PTR), “I believe there will be revenue dedicated to PTR reduction and teacher salaries as both Boards have worked together for the last few years to address both of these issues,” she said.