Comparing Notes: 5 Area School Budgets

With school budget cuts on many peoples’ minds, we thought it would be useful to compare some of the District ledgers around theLoop…








Here’s a look at the various Superintendent proposals for the 2010-11 school year as of March 17, 2010:

Mamaroneck.   The$122,695,077 budget is a 1.47% increase overlast year with a 2.81%tax   increase.  See full budget here.  With a nearly 9% tax increase on a budget-to-budget basis, to get to the current proposal,  there were many cuts and eliminations, including 52.8 positions, 11 of which are teachers; reductions in funding to the Hommocks and High School musicals, Semi-Royal Shakespeare, Mamaroneck Community Counseling Center and Teacher Institute; elimination of class trips, Lincoln Center program, PEP band, 11 extra-curricular clubs, practice tests in grades 3-5 and 5th grade ERB testing; and reductions to the athletic program such as eliminating three curriculum coordinators, 14 program assistant coaches and reducing 8 teams/9 coaches in order to field no more than three teams per sport.  Summary of proposed budget 

TheSchool Board will hold another work session on April 6th and is scheduled to adopt a budget on April 20th.


RyeNeck. The $35 million budget calls for a 2.04% tax increase for Rye Town residents and 3.88% for Rye City residents.  The Superintendent achieved $1 million in cuts including $158,000 by cutting two full time positions, a special education teacher and a teaching assistant, a part-time English teacher and a part-time occupational therapist and coaching stipends.  Copy of the budget.
Hearings will be held on April 7th, April 21st andMay 5th at 7:30pm in the MS/HS Library Community Room.


New Rochelle.  The $226 million budget increases taxes by 3.8% with spending cuts of $3.7million.  More than half a million dollars is saved by eliminating district busing for sixth graders; under the proposal, those students who need buses will need to buy Bee Line passes, as do district 7-12th graders. Also cut will be 25-35 employee positions and 10 vacancies will not be filled.  The teachers’ union already is scheduled to take a wage freeze from July to December.  The  Superintendent’s proposed budget is available here and  his letter to the community.   The School Board will adopt a budget at the April 6th meeting at Trinity Elementary School. 


Rye City.  The nearly $70 million budget calls for a 1.95% tax hike. Access the budget and revisions on the district website:

10.8 employee positions will be eliminated and each cost center will cut expenses by 3-10%, among other things. 

The next meeting to discuss the budget is March 23rd at 8pm at RyeMiddle School.  The School

Board is scheduled to adopt a budget on April 13. 


Scarsdale.  The $134,743,938 budget, up 2.87% from last year, increases taxes 2.88% for Scarsdale residents and 6.1% for Mamaroneck Strip residents.  The district made $1.1 million in spending cuts and teachers voluntarily agreed to reduce their contractual pay increases by 1% until 2012.  Cuts include 15.6 teaching positions and $800,000 and $500,000 less in the facilities and operations budgets, respectively.  After community objection to eliminating the Scarsdale Teen Center and youth outreach workers, those programs were saved, albeit with reduced funding. 

The community can provide feedback by calling 914-721-2400 or writing  The proposed budget is available here .


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  3. Thank you for this well done article.

    School taxes are important, yet too too expensive. We never get enough support from NYS.

  4. NYS reps from NYC would take away ALL our state aid if they could. They think they’re all Slumdog and we’re all Millionaires. LI reps are greedy pigs, too. Why do they both succeed? 60 reps from NYC, 20 from LI, 7 from Westchester. Size DOES matter.

  5. [quote][i]Size DOES matter.[/i] – The Pine Brook Kid[/quote]

    But it seems that many here want their too small, too inefficient, too ineffective districts, municipal boundaries and governments, for their warm and cozy feeling. A very expensive choice – a poor one that is making them poorer. Perhaps they’ll learn, but little evidence to support this. If they do, probably not because of the schools. Perhaps they’ll vote with their feet. Perhaps they’ll succumb.

    NYC has the size and possibly the capability and power to [u]secede[/u]. Perhaps we can change in time, but it will take much BIGGER thinking than the changes suggested in the Tri-Municipal Services Consolidation committee report.

    Our last store standing may very well be a shoe store.

  6. Scarsdale, Edgemont, New Rochelle, Hastings teachers, among many others in Westchester opened up their contracts in order to save fellow teachers’ jobs.

    The Mamaroneck Teachers receive one of the most generous salary and benefit salary packages in the United States but many take advantage of their tenured positions and stream out at the end of the day for their lucrative tutoring jobs (teaching the very curriculum that their fellow teachers can’t each).

    It’s a great job if you can get it: Answer to no one (at least after you are awarded tenure, holidays, vacation, sick time, snow (or, at times, rain days), when parents still have to march off to work to pay for their salaries and scramble to find child care), summers off and out of the doors by 3:30.

    Grading papers at night? Perhaps a handful of teachers in the years that my children have been in the Hommocks or the High School. Our district can surely take the award for the least amount of writing required of students before 11th grade.

    Charter Schools mentioned in another comment are looking pretty good…At least a little free market competition.

  7. The presentation on the reserves from the Asst Super Dr is crystal-clear : the District has been hoarding more and more funds thanks to over-conservative tax rates. It is unbelievable and unconscionable that in year 08/09, in the midst of the Great Recession, the district has been hiking its unreserved fund balance from 2% to 4%. If they need cash flow, they can use the certoriari fund which accrues by millions every year and only pays hundreds of thousands. The Tax certiorari reserve is now at about FOUR times the annual outgoing. The Reserve history shows that in 4 years, the District has hoarded SEVEN MILLION DOLLARS. They ought to use them now, and decrease the tax rate. Thanks to all the efforts of the community, the figures are getting out. Let’s continue the effort and vote any increase down.

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