The Lynbrook Public Schools Board of Education held a work session on Feb. 24 in the Lynbrook High School auditorium to discuss the district’s 2021-22 budget. The meeting was livestreamed for the community on the district’s website. Due to the pandemic, the district worked diligently through the uncertainties and formulated a budget that met the allowable tax cap while also preserving programs.
Dr. Paul Lynch, assistant superintendent for finance, operations and information systems, led the evening presentation. He shared that the proposed budget of $92,907,426 will result in a tax levy of $72,566,899, meeting the state’s maximum allowable tax levy increase of 1.88 percent.
The district proposed the addition of 6.5 new staff members. This includes an elementary special education teacher, two elementary teachers assistants, an elementary teacher aide, along with a custodian and a cleaner at Lynbrook High School. Dr. Lynch also provided an overview of the curriculum priorities such as adding an additional special education class at the elementary level, purchasing book selections from diverse perspectives to offer student choice and continuing staff development for technology, special education and reading.
He also shared the budget process timeline with the community and detailed each department’s budget. The budgets of the superintendent and the board of education remained flat. The athletics and health budget, facilities budget, school budgets, special services budget and the personnel, transportation and student support services budget showed a decrease. Those that saw an increase were the business department, communications department, curriculum, instruction and assessment department, fine and performing arts department, guidance department and special programs department (adult education and summer programs). Salaries also showed a slight increase due to contractual obligations.
In addition, Dr. Lynch reported on some capital facility projects that would be included within the budget. With voter approval, the district would use $605,000 for the following projects: sealing the playground surface at the Kindergarten Center, making improvements to the elevator project at Marion Street School to adhere to the Americans with Disabilities Act and adding roofing onto two needed sections of Lynbrook High School.
Two additional propositions will be on the ballot along with Proposition 1, the proposed budget. Voter authorization is required on these propositions and the use of the reserve money has no impact on the upcoming tax levy. Proposition 2, Use of the Technology Replacement Fund Reserve, will give the district authorization to use $600,000 from the Technology Reserve Fund to replace the network infrastructure, conduct a replacement cycle on teacher desktops and provide touch screens at the Kindergarten Center. If approved, $761,625 would remain in the fund.
Proposition 3, Use of Building Improvement and Equipment Fund, will give the district authorization to use $2,435,904 to create a turf field at Lynbrook North Middle School and replace the basketball, handball and tennis courts at Waverly Park Elementary School. If approved, $3,287,216 would remain in the district’s two Facilities Capital Reserve Funds.
The board anticipates adopting the budget on March 10. The budget hearing is planned for May 5, the last day to register to vote is May 12 and the budget vote is on May 18. To view the livestream of the work session and review the budget presentation, please visit the BOE – Virtual Meetings tab at www.lynbrookschools.org.