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West Genesee works on spending plan

— Superintendent Chris Brown started off Wednesday’s West Genesee Board of Education meeting by noting that the district budget was coming together — and with minimal cuts to programming expected.

“We have been busy building a budget and it looks like a situation where we won’t have to cut anything additional, aside from those made necessary by declining enrollment,” Brown said. The first draft of the budget would be completed by the district’s February break, he said.

The board set dates for a budget hearing on May 2 and the state-wide board election and budget vote on May 15, which includes a vote to approve a referendum for purchasing eight new school buses.

Onondaga Road Elementary School Principal Deborah Geiss gave a presentation highlighting the changes to the district’s Strategic Plan for Educational Improvement for the 2012-2013 school year. Changes included meeting the mandates for New York’s “Race to the Top” program including common core learning standards, data driven instruction and annual professional performance review.

The board approved entering a service agreement with several online-based tutoring services to aid West Genesee Middle School students. The opportunity to use these services comes from state grant money that makes available $1,121 worth of tutoring per each student, if necessary, said Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction Brian Kesel.

Board member Roberta Herron introduced revisions to the district’s student bullying policy. The changes include bullying and cyber bullying and include new policies regarding retaliation prevention and intervention. The board will vote on the changes at its next two meetings, Herron said.

Joe Genco is an editorial intern with Eagle Newspapers.

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