Superintendent Bill Olsen on Nov. 17

A First Look At Next Year’s School Budget

Here’s an overview of the Nov. 17, 2014 Westford School Committee meeting. We’ll have a full recap later this week. Also make sure to check out westfordcat.org for a full video of the meeting.

Overview on Special Education Provided

Director of Pupil Services Courtney Moran provided an overview on the state of special education in Westford’s schools as well as some requests for the School Committee in the upcoming year, foreshadowing the budget discussion later in the meeting.

Superintendent Bill Olsen on Nov. 17

Superintendent Bill Olsen on Nov. 17

Principal Provides Four Point Plan to Improve Westford Academy

Westford Academy Principal Jim Antonelli provided an update on a four point improvement plan implemented over the past year and talked about a new four point plan renewed a focus on communication, operational funding and improving student well being.

Specifics included faster online grade availability for parents, a camp for students, the Bridge program and the School Resource Officer.

Westford Academy Welcomes Chinese Principal

Tim Welch, the International Exchange Coordinator and a German teacher at Westford Academy, gave an overview on the International Exchange program and foreign language program at the school.

He also gave plans for expansion and a Chinese school principal visiting from a high school now partnered with Westford.

Initial FY’ 16 School Budget Request at $53.6 Million     

Superintendent Bill Olsen provided an overview at the budget for the upcoming school year that will be requested from Town Meeting in March.

In addition to an increase to retain current services, approximately $400,000 will also be requested to deal with other items outside of the School Department’s control such as a new law impacting expulsions as well as increased fuel and electricity costs.

However, he also noted several items mentioned earlier in the meeting that could not be funded and that some requests may not be needed and would be returned to other town departments if not expended.

A full discussion on the budget was postponed to a later date due to time constraints.