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Newton High School Case Study

Decent Essays
Beth Walton and I were able to interview Jeff Waldron the Principal at Newton High School.
When asked the question "What is the relationship between the building budget to the district budget?" Mr. Waldron's response was "Directly Proportional. Newton Public Schools are made up of three buildings. The Meriam Ave School that houses K-5, Halsted Middle School which houses 6-8 and Newton High School 9-12. What he means by proportional is that each school is not given a set amount each year. The building administrators will create a budget based on their "perceived" needs. Once all the building administrators have submitted their budgets, they will re-evaluate their "needs" based on the available funding. Mr. Waldron states that he finds doing a budget based on needs is a better way to manage a budget rather than just giving each building a set amount each school year. By using a needs based system, if all administrators budget responsibly, they can prioritize these needs and cut in order of necessity to get a balance budget.
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Mr. Waldron responded that a principal has direct control over most items that run a school building such as supplies, professional development, purchased services, furniture and instructional materials. They have sort of an indirect control over salaries and benefit on they way they can manipulate their staffing needs. He gave the example that he could potentially eliminate several part-time staff members so that the savings could allow the central office to permit the hiring of a full-time teacher.

How does state funding impact the building budget? Mr. Waldron stated the state funding directly impacts the building budget. If the state aid is up then the district can fund more of their perceived needs and if it is down they will fund
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