We need to do what we think is best, but we need to be flexible. Welcome Welcome to the Internet home of the Ridgefield Public Schools. “Our primary responsibility here is the students in our care,” said Jonathan Steckler. “We’re almost an elementary school less than that. Jan 13: BOE Conference Room in Town Annex: Elementary and Middle School Budgets. RIDGEFIELD PUBLIC SCHOOLS 8 RIDGEFIELD PUBLIC SCHOOLS BUDGET FY 2016-17 The district’s operating budget for FY 2016-17 is $90,374,229, or an increase in spending of $4,295,864 or 4.99%. … “We’ve had two meetings since this started, and they’ve been trivial, we haven’t discussed the hard things... “We need to look at the big bets. Prior to the coronavirus epidemic, the Board of Education had approved a $102-million budget (3.96% increase from 2019-20) that created several new positions and increased education spending by nearly $4 million for the 2020-21 school year. Redding is looking at $600,000 more in salaries, accounting for $16 million of the overall $22.8 million budget. Together, the nine schools that comprise our district provide a safe, empowering learning environment for just under 5,000 pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade students in Ridgefield, Connecticut. Absentee Ballots cannot be mailed for this type of Referendum and must be obtained in person in the Town Clerk's office. “...if we’re forced to have a 0% increase, we can wish we have all the science and math support we want, but we’re not going to have that... “If we have to make those deep cuts, then those deep cuts have to be made,” he said. “It’s not an unlimited pot of money.”. Board of Education Corner; Ridgefield Public Schools ; Ridgefield Council of PTAs . The path of least resistance would be to maintain a budget at 2.96,” she said. We do expect that to be changed by the Board of Finance,” he said. At the end of the board’s discussion of the 2020-21 budget, McEvoy made a point about his colleagues referring to the school system’s enrollment as 5,000 students, despite a continuing decline. Fellow board member Carina Drake noted that the board had received 24 emails from parents concerned about the reduction in art teachers at the elementary school level. Floegel’s motion to rescind the board’s request for a $102 million budget next year was voted down 7-to-2 Monday night, April 27. “I’m a little disappointed in board leadership,” he said. “...We are fiscally accountable for the school system. By Macklin Reid. He mentioned things like possibly combining information technology operations with the town’s IT department. Ms. Gillette comes to Ridgefield from the Darien Public Schools, where she has worked since 2013, first as a Literacy . Sjoberg, Drake, Steckler, Holz and chairwoman Stamatis opposed the motion. When her motion came to a vote, only Floegel and her seconder, McEvoy, voted to rescind the board’s previous vote seeking a $102 million budget with a 3.96 percent spending increase. Board members Ruggeri, Gaydos. The State has designated priority groups (or tiers) for each group to be vaccinated. Town of Ridgefield Information on State-Local COVID-19 Vaccination Program. Local By Kendra Baker New Fairfield residents question legality of high school... Local By Kendra Baker New plans proposed for New Fairfield High School building project. We’ve got a long runway to bring back a new district, and tell the town it’s going to be better,’ McEvoy said. These include all schools (except Scotland Elementary School) being flat-funded to 2019-20; reductions in the technology and curriculum departments; deferred purchases of furniture and fixtures; and athletics funded at 2019-20 budget GF (General Fund) contribution amounts except for contractual obligations. The vaccination program for the State of Connecticut is currently underway. Ridgefield is a beautiful, colonial town of approximately 24,300 people in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains in central Fairfield County, Connecticut. “After that we’re looking at everything,” Da Silva said. Board of Education Corner; Ridgefield Public Schools; ALL 2020-21 BOE Budget related meetings . We are living in unprecedented times!”. “These discussions have not only involved art education, but all essentials (specials). “There’s a lot of things we do need to look at,” Steckler said. RIDGEFIELD, CT — The Board of Finance approved both the 2019-20 school and town budgets on Tuesday night, opening the door for a 1.24% tax increase, … At this point, they’re not open to that discussion.”, She added, “I look to the board to give us ideas of things we haven’t considered.”. “Once that work was completed, the team calibrated across all schools, followed by the creation of a schedule for all essentials. #Ridgefield BOE Public Hearing on Saturday: Superintendent’s FY 2020-21 Proposed Operating Budget @Ridgefieldps The proposed $98.3 million budget is an increase of 3.43 percent over the $95 million voters approved for the 2018-19 school year last May. Ridgefield Board of Ed Begins Budget Review - Ridgefield, CT - The 2013-2014 Ridgefield school budget, which was unveiled by Superintendent of School… Ridgefield school board declines to reduce its budget request April 30, 2020 Updated: April 30, 2020 3 p.m. Ridgefield is a beautiful, colonial town of approximately 24,300 people in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains in central Fairfield County, Connecticut. “Those of us who are or were educators definitely understand the impact on the kids,” she said. With the coronavirus epidemic setting off an economic free-fall across the country, the question wasn’t going to be how much school districts could add to their 2020-21 budgets but rather how much they would need to remove. “School is shut down till September. “All of our budgets flat-funded. “We are at the brink of economic devastation,” she said. “There will be cuts at all levels. Board member Rachel Ruggeri said she had coronavirus-related health concerns about art teachers needing to travel between different elementary schools. The town was founded in 1708 when about 30 families from Long Island Sound settlements bought these uplands... Read More About the Town of Ridgefield, CT CT towns’ coffers take a hit with tax relief programs. “As a reminder, 80% of our budget is people,” she said. “We currently have a 3.96% increase approved. 2020-21 BOE Budget Meetings; Ridgefield Public School calendar; Project Resilience calendar; Community Partners; Resources. “Our state is already on the brink of bankruptcy.”. Ridgefield Academy/Landmark Preschool admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. Floegel thought there were areas where the schools could reduce spending that had been planned before the coronavirus brought both local and national economies to a near standstill. “Maybe we can use what we used last year.”. Talk of soaring unemployment and a need for collaboration and flexibility in difficult times did not translate into a Board of Education majority willing to rescind it’s request for a 3.96 percent budget increase next year. Ridgefield is a beautiful, colonial town of approximately 24,300 people in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains in central Fairfield County, Connecticut. Executive orders from Governor Ned Lamont give the selectmen and finance board budget-making authority normally wielded by voters at the Annual Town Meeting and the the budget referendum. Ridgefield’s Karashik scores first goal for UConn since 2018 CT's women's hockey team will play a 'bubble' season in 2021 WestConn becomes third Connecticut university to cancel winter “While we may not have 40 percent unemployment, it’s over 20 percent,” she said. Budget Referendum to take place at Yanity Gym, 60 Prospect Street, Ridgefield CT from 6 am to 8 pm. “Buying textbooks,” she said. Meaning, once the team determined what is best for children across all programs and academics, then recommendations for budget cuts were made. But they were reluctant to preemptively reduce their $102 million budget request. Ridgefield Honors Veterans, Police Officer Seibert Speaks, Evelyn Carr Sings, Thanks To American Legion Post 78! “We want to partner with the town. He gave colleagues something of a pep talk about considering more drastic changes to the school system. Floegel said the state of Connecticut could potentially experience 400,000 unemployment claims. “This is not time for deep diving cuts on already lean budgets,” said board member Rachel Ruggeri. “I’m against this reduction,” Ruggeri said. Ridgefield is a beautiful, colonial town of approximately 24,300 people in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains in central Fairfield County, Connecticut. The meeting also heard communications on the budget from some 25 residents read into the record, with all but one of them asking that cuts to be held to a minimum. I’ve never seen something like this.”. We’ve looked at every option we can, and we’re starting to create those scenarios,” Da Silva said. “This is the time to lean into education to find the money to pay for our children.”. Ridgefield’s school system now has a clearer idea. The vote came during a Board of Eucation meeting open to the public on Zoom. The administration will be constructing “scenarios” for how various levels of budget reductions could be absorbed, and how their implications would play out. Contracted pay raises are a big part of the school board’s annual budget increase, and Da Silva said the administration had begun talking to union groups about potential adjustments to contracts — but hadn’t gotten very far with the system’s largest and most expensive union group, teachers. Dr. DeSantis will be a familiar name to many RPS families as he is the current K-12 STEM Supervisor and before that a beloved Ridgefield High School physics teacher, coach of the electric car race team, and founding director of the annual cardboard boat race. “ ...I don’t know if we can go line by line at this point. Search 4,862 Ridgefield, CT home builders to find the best home builder for your project. [citation needed] The town was incorporated under a royal charter from the Connecticut General Assembly issued in 1709.Ridgefield was descriptively named. “The recommended cut in art education was made after this work, not before. We welcome your suggestions for information you would like to see on our website and encourage your involvement in our schools. Board member Nora Gaydos spoke “on behalf of the 5,000 children who can’t speak for themselves.” She was wary of reducing the budget request. Jan 15: BOE … Other board members simply doubtful about the wisdom of preemptively cutting a 2020-21 budget request that will have to finance a difficult return to school — either later this spring, or in the fall. “But none of them look great.”. “We have to be flexible. “If you want to win this budget battle you’ve got to do it as a team,” he said. Published 5:49 pm EST, Thursday, February 13, 2020 That’s not our job.”. The motion passed by a vote of 7-2. See the top reviewed local home builders in Ridgefield, CT on Houzz. New Milford also proposed eliminating a teacher at Sarah Noble Intermediate School and a high school math teacher, though it’s adding several more at the elementary schools. “We are truly going line by line. “That’s the path of least resistance, not necessarily the best path,” she added. The breakdown of the budget is illustrated in the pie chart below and can be found in the Summary Budget Analysis by Object spreadsheet in the Appendix. Without those three additions, just carrying forward the current operations with contracted salary and other non-discretionary cost increases, would mean a budget with about a 2.96 percent increase — one percent less — she said. “I don’t believe it’s time for us to jump ahead of them, and assume a 40% unemployment rate and bankrupt state. “Our kids are going to be hurting too,” said Rachel Ruggeri. The final total is an increase of $1,718,391 (1.75%) from the 2019-20 school budget. Ridgefield silent at school budget hearing; increase now below four percent. We’re going to have to work together with the administration and faculty,” said board member Kathleen Holz. “That conversation is over. New School Superintendent Susie Da Silva noted that the budget request for a 3.96% increase that she had inherited from Interim Superintendent JeanAnn Paddyfote had called for expanded services and personnel in three areas: the addition off three math coaches, another social worker at the high school, and a director of security position to oversee all aspects of school security. To meet the reduction, Superintendent of Schools Susie Da Silva had presented several recommendations at the board of education’s previous meeting May 26. Superintendent of Schools Dr. Susie Da Silva announced that Dr. Wes DeSantis will be the new Director of Education Technology. “This spring the team re-analyzed current instructional minute allocations across all six elementary schools ... and [made] comparisons within our District Reference Group,” Da Silva wrote. RIDGEFIELD, CT — The Ridgefield Board of Education has voted unanimously to approve Superintendent Dr. Karen Baldwin's $93.5-million budget request for the upcoming school … Those included removing requests for three math coaches and a director of security and eliminating or reducing several positions — including a transition coordinator, the equivalent of two teaching positions at Ridgefield High School, and three elementary school art teachers. Sojberg summed up the situation going forward. Meeting virtually on Monday evening, the Ridgefield Board of Education approved a motion to adopt the revised 2020-21 Ridgefield Public Schools Operating Budget of $99,912,151. Based on discussion at last week’s tri-board meeting, school officials seemed to regard a reduction in the 2020-21 school budget as very likely to be handed down by the selectmen and finance board. McEvoy’s initial questioning of “board leadership” — which appeared to be addressed to chairwoman Margaret Stamatis — drew a rebuke. But at a meeting in April, the town’s Board of Finance approved the $99,912,000 school budget for 2020-21, leaving the schools with slightly more than $2 million to trim from their original proposal. “We need to make all the decisions that we do make based on what’s the best we can do with the amount of money we’re allowed to have,” he said. Consistency across all of our six elementary schools was an intentional outcome in this process.”, Board of education approves school budget, Ridgefield starts vaccinations, but a ways to go, Ridgefield Food Pantry receiver of $1,750 donation, Freemasons celebrate 50-year members in Ridgefield, Ms President US receiver of $4,200 grant from foundation, Ms President US program initiative kicks off its fourth year, Yoga Nidra (Yogic Sleep): On Ridgefield Continuing Education schedule, Ridgefield boy learns piano, pens possible holiday classic, ESL, GED, Adult Basic Education classes starting, Bridge: Ridgefield Continuing Education classes set to start, Police: Woman robbed liquor store, tried to sell stolen booze on Snapchat, ‘Tremendously important to get the vaccine distributed’: Ridgefield starts vaccinations, Police: Fitness trainer charged with sexually assaulting teen in Bridgeport, Ridgefield High School reports 6 new COVID cases, Police: Darien man, 20, tried to use BB gun for target practice in Woodland Park, Police: 2 CT residents charged in Capitol protest. Absentee ballots are now available for the May 9, 2017 Budget Referendum. Ridgefield was first settled by English colonists from Norwalk and Milford in 1708, when a group of settlers purchased land from Chief Catoonah of the Ramapo tribe. “We haven’t been 5,000 students for many many years,” McEvoy said. The Ridgefield Public Schools Board of Education is proud of its educational program and the high standards set for our students, faculty, and support staff and is committed to improving communication between the school system and the residents of Ridgefield. Other board members questioned the idea of rescinding their budget request in advance of action by the selectmen and Board of Finance. I know as a teacher, just when a student is out for a week, what the impact is,” Gaydos said. The Ridgefield Council of PTAs, with 9 local-unit PTAs, is the umbrella organization for the PTAs in Ridgefield. 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