Superintendent's Message

Message from the Superintendent -- March 31st, 2009

Good Morning Meridian,

I know that many of you have woken up to see the headlines in the Herald giving a very grim overview of the senate budget that was released yesterday afternoon.

Although I will need to continue to gathering information from the house budget and specific information on categorical program funding for the remainder of the week, it is clear that the reductions in state support for education are going to be very significant.

In the senate budget, I-728, Local Effort Assistance (Levy Equalization), and enhanced funding for K-4 staffing were all heavily impacted or eliminated. These are very important streams of revenue for Meridian.

Until specific numbers can be gathered there is no way predict the impact that this information will have on specific positions or programs within the district. The steps that follow will be:

  1. I will be gathering all of the budget information over the remainder of the week and I will be communicating that information to the school board as soon as it is clear.
  2. As said before, keeping the instructional program as the first district priority, we will then examine what potential impacts the budget numbers may have on our district moving forward.
  3. Following spring break I will be out to meet with each school staff following the school day to discuss the impacts and answer any questions you may have. This will most certainly be a topic of discussion for the school board at the April 15, 2009 meeting.

This level of impact is most certainly not what folks in all parts of the education community were hoping for. It is going to bring about noticeable changes to be sure.

That being said, We will have school in Meridian next year. Our staff has been working very hard and we have realized significant improvements in our program over the last two years. We will continue to place the education of our students at the forefront, and we will get through this challenging situation together. We can do this.

Thanks for keeping the focus of our students on learning. Thanks for using all of the instructional time his week to keep them focused and prepared as they move toward their assessments after break. Thanks to all of you for remaining positive with parents and community as the discussion of budget impacts come up. I will look forward to seeing each of you face to face following the break.

Tim Yeomans

Superintendent - Meridian School District