The series of three sessions dedicated to Malverne SD budget came to the end on March 18. The first session was dedicated to “instructional” expenses (codes 2010-2855), followed by a session on “operational” expenses (codes 1620-1981 and 5000s), and the last session paid attention to “administrative” expenses (codes 1010-1480 and 9000s).
In addition to the public sessions, Mr. Caputo, district business administrator, kindly met with me for two extra sessions. It allowed me to better understand the budget tables and tax cap formula. It took several more hours of figuring out how to present the budget with more visual appeal. The table shows about a third of the actual Malverne SD (MUFSD) budget lines. All amounts in the table are projected values, not actual expenses. The most important/mandated categories are at the top and the least important at the bottom. Lines within categories are arranged from the highest expense to the lowest.
Arranging budget this way allows ordinary residents who don’t live and breathe the accounting profession to visualize the process as a filtration system where they pour money in and it filters down. Whatever doesn’t get filtered out by mandated expenses reaches the bottom. The bottom of each category reflects how detrimental the combination of the GEA, 2% tax cap law, and CCSS has been to programs, services, and staff since 2012–13. (Click the thumbnail and then zoom to 100% to be able to read the table).
The estimated CCSS-related expenses found in the last column (2014–15) of the budget sample come to the amount of $800,000 annually. When asked for more accurate amount, the district administration replied they would have to get back with that information.
The MUFSD consists of a total of 4 schools (PK–2, 3–5, 6–8, 9–12) with approximately 1,650 students. In addition to the controversy with age inappropriate standards, implementation, testing, methodology of assessment and evaluation affecting schools, the untested, unproven CCSS experiment was thrust at all district residents who have to pay for it. (In NY, school districts collect levy on property). According to Bill Gates, we will know in 10 years if the experiment was successful. His follower, John King, NY education commissioner, had a similar comment.