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South Col. budget would exceed tax cap

Savings use trimmed back while tax levy would grow 5.4 percent

— If the district puts forward a budget in excess of the levy limit, at least 60 percent of voters would have to approve it for passage. If a budget fails, the school district could put forward another budget, put forward the same budget or go directly to a contingency budget.

Administrators said cuts would include a roughly 9 percent reduction across all areas, the idea being to protect certain programs. Full-day kindergarten will stay at all elementary schools, class sizes will be maintained and equalized, Advanced Placement and college-level courses will still be offered and early literacy programs will remain. Foreign language offerings will be cut from fifth and sixth grades but will remain in seventh through twelfth.

The art and music programs will see some restructuring but no programs will be eliminated, Buhner said.

“One of the reasons we’re trying to be thoughtful about that is because the philosophy here is we should be educating the whole child and making sure they have a wide range of experiences, including the arts,” he said. “Try to stay within the key mission of the district … to provide a well-rounded education for the kids.”

There will be a budget work session at Saddlewood Elementary School on Thursday, April 11, at 7 p.m. The public budget vote will take place on Tuesday, May 21, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. with polling sites at all the district’s elementary schools.

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