Kaneland identifies early budget reduction targets

By on January 28, 2011

By Keith Beebe
KANELAND—It’s becoming clearer which areas the Kaneland School District will target in order to reduce its budget.

The Kaneland School Board on Monday was presented with a budget reduction update from Superintendent Jeff Schuler, who provided a document outlining the areas, or “cost centers,” that are slated for financial reduction in the 2012 fiscal year.

The district intends to cut projected expenditures by $1 million.

“This is just the process of reviewing all the line items in the budget in order to identify possible reductions,” Schuler said.

According to the budget reduction update, the cost centers have been simplified and narrowed down to elementary, middle school, high school and district. The projected reductions are $237,946 (23.79 percent of the targeted amount) at the elementary level, $127,911 (12.79 percent) at the middle school level, $169,884 (16.99 percent) at the high school level and $464,259 (46.43 percent) at the district level.

These figures are preliminary targets, however, and will be subjected to review before the initial cost-reduction plan is presented to the School Board on Feb. 14.

“The cost-center targets are just the starting point. As we identify cost reductions within each area, it’s highly possible that in the final cost reduction plan we put together, there may be cost centers that are either higher or lower than the initial targeted amounts,” Schuler said. “And that’s because when we put the entire plan together and look at the K-12 impact, there may be some cuts where we’ll say, ‘No, we’re not comfortable with that, but we are comfortable going further (with reductions) in one of the targeted areas.’ That certainly happened last year.”

A community forum regarding the initial list of reductions is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 22, at the Harter Middle School cafeteria.