3 Things You Missed At Last Night's School Board Meeting

by Reporter / Jul 02, 2015 / comments

3 Things You Missed At Last Night's School Board Meeting

ESPAÑOLA - The Española School Board and Interim Superintendent Bobbie Gutierrez were on hand Wednesday night for the regularly scheduled School Board meeting at Carlos F. Vigil Middle School. In case you were unable to attend, here is what you missed.

1. Española Public School's technical budget review with New Mexico's Public Education Department was a success. Board President Pablo Lujan noted that PED's staff complimented Superintendent Gutierrez on presenting a budget and plan that was "98 percent better this year than the previous."

2. Superintendent Gutierrez reported that Española Public Schools were currently expected to increase spending on direct instructional training from 65 percent to 71 percent this upcoming school year. This is in large part due to staff lowering administration costs by 2 percent and operations costs by 4 percent. Gutierrez noted that their goal will be to get 75 percent of the operational budget spent on direct instruction for the next year.

3. Superintendent Gutierrez thanked the "angel watching over us" during the meeting, as she expressed her gratitude for the unexpected $550,000 in funding that arrived from the Federal Forest Reserve payment under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act for the 2012-2015 school years. 

After using the limited reserves to balance the District's budget, it was recommended that the school board restore the depleted emergency reserves with up to $500,000 of the funds allotted. Gutierrez called for transparency and public discussion at the next school board meeting. She insisted regardless of the court's final decision on the closing of Velarde Elementary School, these funds would be critical to stop employee furloughs as well as additional cuts to services and educational programs throughout the District.

The next Española School Board meeting will take place, July 15 at Carlos F. Vigil Middle School starting at 5:30 p.m..