Superintendent Charles Gobron presented a preliminary budget to the Northborough-Southborough Regional School Committee on Wednesday night. The budget represents a 2.7% increase over the current year and does not include teacher or staff reductions.
The budget subcommittee is looking into ways of increasing revenue in the district. One option being considered is the school choice program. Historically, our district has opted out of the program which allows out-of-district students to attend our schools. The fact that Algonquin could take in as much as $100K through the program, has officials taking another look.
School districts accepting school choice students are compensated $5,000 per student. Gobron said the move is something to consider for the upcoming year because the projected enrollment for incoming freshmen at Algonquin Regional High School for 2011-2012 is 338 students, 35 less than the 373 freshman that are enrolled at the school this academic year.
But the Metrowest Daily News reports not all are in favor of the idea:
But some committee members expressed reluctance, citing some of the program’s rules. For example, Algonquin can’t choose which students it accepts under the program, and all students accepted as freshman are required to attend the school for all four years.
“We’re talking about taking in more students, but on the other hand, we’ve admitted that our class sizes are already too large,” committee member Cheryl Levesque said. “For that reason, I don’t look at this possibility as money in the bank.”
Where do you come down on the class size vs. revenue debate? Do you think school choice is worth another look? Share your thoughts in the comments.