Sebec

Work continues on 2018-19 RSU 68 finances

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DOVER-FOXCROFT — A draft of the budget for the 2018-19 academic year is nearing completion, the RSU 68 school board heard during a March 6 meeting at the SeDoMoCha School.

“The budget committee just met and we talked about the budget and where we are,” Superintendent Stacy Shorey said, saying an expenditure budget has been completed.

“In April I will be bringing that to the entire board for your review,” Shorey said, with this scheduled for the agenda of the April 3 meeting at the Harland A. Ladd Municipal Building in Sebec.

The current RSU 68 budget totals $10,817,189 an increase of about $302,100 from the year before. The spending plan is made up of nearly $5,537,900 in state contributions and another $5,279,294 in local revenues with the four RSU 68 communities having a combined local assessment of just under $4,634,570. This figure — comprised of local contributions, additional local monies and funding for adult education — is up by about $87,900.

In other business, Shorey said she has met with Interim Superintendent Raymond Freve of the Guilford-based SAD 4 to discuss the idea of an alternative organizational structure (AOS) between the two school units. Under the AOS there could be the possibility of sharing a superintendent and business manager, and perhaps other services.

“We have a meeting with the commissioner (of the Maine Department of Education) to discuss this moving forward,” Shorey said. “Right now we are just exploring to see what the possibilities are.”

RSU 68 directors Chair Jenny Chase said she met with SAD 4 school board Chair Niki Fortier.

“They’re still up in the air on what they’re going to do but this is part of the conversation,” Chase said.

“To be honest they were a bit apprehensive of our intentions and the truth is we don’t have any intentions,” she said. Chase said she and Fortier both felt better after the sit down.

Shorey said SAD 4 is part of a consortium, along with SAD 46 of Dexter and the Milo-based SAD 41 and others, applying for state funding to construct a comprehensive high school. The application ranked third behind two projects in Aroostook County, and the superintendent said those involved in the application will decide whether to appeal to the Maine Department of Education or not.

“There is about $200 million and probably two of those three will be funded,” Shorey said.

She said currently the district pays for Foxcroft Academy students to be able to attend the Tri-County Technical Center in Dexter. The center is part of the comprehensive high school being sought. Should funding be awarded, then the effect on other districts with students attending the Tri-County Technical Center is something that would have to be looked at.

Appointments were made for spring athletic teams at SeDoMoCha Middle School. Seth Sands will be leading the A softball team and the B softball squad will be headed by Andrew Levensalor. Danica Wilson was appointed as the track head coach with Heather Whitten to serve as the assistant. Max Andrews will be the Eagle baseball coach.

Spring sports sign-ups will be on Monday, April 2.

“We did start our Bikes for Books with our local Masons,” SeDoMoCha School Principal Julie Kimball said.

“Our students are encouraged to read as many books as possible,” she said as for every title finished from late February through late April students can enter a ticket into a drawing. On April 26 one boy and one girl from each grade will have their name pulled, with the winners receiving a brand new bicycle along with a helmet.

“They are very generous to our school for sure,” Kimball said in thanking area Masonic Lodges, which conduct Bikes for Books at multiple schools in the region.

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
TWO DECADES OF SERVICE ON THE SCHOOL BOARD — Frederick “Rick” Johnston of Charleston was thanked for his 20 years on the RSU 68 school board, including terms as both chair and vice chair, during his final meeting on March 6 at the SeDoMoCha School. “There’s just too many people to say thanks to, but I am going to miss it,” Johnston said. Presenting Johnston with a plaque is RSU 68 School Board Chair Jenny Chase.

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