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The Student News Site of East Haven High School

The Comet

The Student News Site of East Haven High School

The Comet

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East Haven Town Budget Lead to Cuts at EHPS

East+Haven+Town+Budget+Lead+to+Cuts+at+EHPS

EHPS requested a $2.7 million increase to the budget to fulfill the requirements of the district needs, but the town of East Haven gave the schools only $250,000 for the 2024-2025 school year. East Haven staff and students are upset with the budget given to us by the town, as the budget does not fulfill the requirements needed for the school to run as usual. This is a large deficit that has to be dealt with in many ways including budget cuts, close inspection of the budget, and denial of money to certain clubs and sports teams. 

The Process

The school first develops a proposed budget as a team based on obligations from their contract for staff, as well as building principles, and things that department heads and directors request for the budget. All of these factors cause the budget to rise to $2.7 million to meet all these requirements. since the school was only granted $250,000, there has to be a close inspection as to where the money will be going, and with a thorough investigation we have found more about where this money may be going. Mr. Richard Caponera, the Chief of Operations and Fiscal Oversight, includes his opinion on the budget that the district requested saying, ”Our proposed budget was a very, in what we feel, a very realistic budget.” Our town hall, and Mayor Carfora, who had chosen not to give any information to The Comet, are the ultimate deciders as to how much money our schools get. 

Superintendent Erica Forti provided some insight on how the budget is proposed and dealt with, as she is a large influence in this decision. She presents this information about the budget to the Board of Education, where changes will be made, and then to the Board of Finance, where more changes will be made. Superintendent Forti will then present the newly designed budget to the Town Council, which ultimately decides the amount of money the schools will receive. East Haven’s proposed budget went through numerous testing, voting, and changing during this process, as everyone apart of the process believed that $2.7 million is what the district needed to thrive for young minds. The Town Council, however, chose to give the school $250,000. 

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The Effects 

After the budgetary choices have been made by the Town Council, it is Superintendent Forti and Mr. Caponera’s job to investigate the budget and what may be unnecessary. She says “I am meeting with people and presenting to the Board of Ed., all of the cuts that have to be made to get us from $2.8 million to $250,000.”  The school has to look through vacant spots for jobs in the school, and see if they need to fill [those], or if they could get rid of those positions all together. The district also looks at sports funding, club funding, and all other funding going to the building and staff. All of these factors could lead to possible staff cuts and funding cuts to sports and clubs. All decisions must be made based on the difference in the budget. Mr. Michael Archambault, the president of East Haven Education Association, shares how classrooms are most likely going to get bigger, and fewer courses are going to be offered next year. He believes this budget decrease greatly affects each aspect of school, and will be noticed in the years to come. No final decisions have been made, but cuts are necessary because of the change in the budget.

There are multiple other factors that have gone into this budget of $2.7 million, which on the outside, aren’t even considered. The school had budgeted for more support for multilingual learners due to the increase of students who are multilingual learners. The school needed to increase the amount of staff for this change, but because of the budget given, there is a very low possibility of this happening. This budget also included the transportation needed to get students to and from school, as the bus company has had an increase in pay recently. The food service program, electricity, heating, and plumbing also had an increase in the past year, and this requested budget was needed to pay for this. All of these factors are non-negotiable when it comes to payment, causing the things that could be taken away to ultimately be taken away. Superintendent Forti touches on this by saying, “Some really hard decisions have to be made, but we are always trying to do so with minimal impact on kids”

Not only are these cuts going to affect the students greatly, but the teachers as well. The teachers attended a Town Council meeting in protest of the budget cuts to acknowledge the impact it is going to have on the teachers and staff in the building. There may not be filled spots next year from retiring teachers because of the low budget, teachers may have to switch positions, and budget cuts may have to be an option. No choices are set in stone yet, but the magnitude at which the budget decreased, it is assumed changes are going to be made. Superintendent Forti says, “The only way we can do our jobs effectively and meet the needs of our diverse student population is through our staff. We need our people,” to keep the students and staff motivated as a seemingly hard new year is coming up. During this time, the entire school should stick together to make the next school year be as enjoyable as possible by looking out for each other and keeping a positive mind.

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About the Contributor
Isabella Mott, Reporter
Isabella Mott works as a reporter for The Comet and the main reviewer for "Keepin' It Reel" at EHHS. She began working with The Comet during the 23–24 academic year, and she intends to stay on as their staff in the upcoming years. She loves writing for The Comet, watching movies, and reading books. She hopes to grow, and add more to the comet at here career here continues.
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