The Alton School Board has approved a budget that is very similar to last year’s, according to the administration. Chris Norman, District Director of Financial Services, says the district has lost millions of dollars in revenue over the last five years, but has managed to tread water thanks to a variety of cost cutting measures.
Norman tells The Big Z some of that comes from reducing payroll by attrition.
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He says between prorated state payments and property tax revenues dropping, the district is looking at continued deficit spending. Norman says this year’s budget shows at least a $2-million deficit. As another cost saving move, the district is making plans to restructure the elementary schools into grade level attendance centers. Superintendent Dr. Kenneth Spells says he plans to meet soon with principals to discuss the options, and then will meet with parents. It’s his belief the plan will be ready for the next school year.