When: School District of Lancaster board meeting, Feb. 9.
What happened: The board heard an update on the governor’s proposed education budget, which if passed would deliver an additional $22.6 million into the district’s coffers. The sum includes the basic education subsidy, special education and savings from charter school funding.
Background: The district is anticipating a $13 million deficit for the 2021-22 budget but has received $26 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act/Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund money to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic to spend over the next two budget cycles.
What it means: In terms of planning the budget, district Chief of Finance and Operations Matthew Przywara said the federal money only lasts two years, but any state increases would be sustainable. The district is anticipating budget deficits over the next few years.
Quotable: “The good news is that Gov. (Tom) Wolf is fighting for education. The challenge of that is — is it realistic?" Przywara said, referring to any expectations that the district would receive the full amount from the state.
Construction: The district’s capital improvement plan to improve aging schools was next on the agenda. Fidevia Construction Management & Consulting provided an overview of ongoing work. Crews should finish at Buchanan Elementary School by June 11. New construction should close at Lincoln Middle School by the end of March and crews are concluding punch-list items on the Reynolds Middle School playdeck. The district plans to put the Wickersham Elementary School project to bid this spring.
What’s next: The board will meet at 7 p.m. on Feb. 16. The public can view the meeting on the district’s website and register to comment.