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Ann Arbor Public Schools Begin 2014-15 Budget Talks

Andrew Cluley
89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor Public Schools Superintendent Jeanice Swift says the district will innovate its way through next year’s budget.  The school board began budget discussions Wednesday night with a work session.

Nearly $4.7 million of cuts and additional revenue have been identified to address a projected gap of $10.7 million.  That’s assuming no net increase in state funding and the district reclaims about 200 students that left the district this school year.

Swift is optimistic the board will fill all 750 schools of choice openings, based on the brisk pace of receiving applications so far.  The district also often sees a spike in schools of choice applications near the deadline.  Swift thinks efforts to attract schools of choice students are working for others as well.

Swift says they won’t be proposing the same types of painful cuts the district has looked at in past years.  That means they aren’t proposing cuts to instruction, larger class sizes, teacher layoffs, or reductions in electives, athletics, and performance arts.  She says during her listen and learn tour she heard clearly the community wants a different type of budget process.

Superintendent Jeanice Swift discusses areas they will be looking at to close the budget gap.

Community input sessions on the budget will begin Tuesday at Slauson Middle School.

More information on the community meetings can be found here.

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— Andrew Cluley is the Ann Arbor beat reporter, and anchor for 89.1 WEMU News. Contact him at 734.487.3363 or email him acluley@emich.edu.

Like many, I first came to this area when I started school at the University of Michigan, then fell in love with the community and haven’t left. After graduating from U of M in the mid 1990’s I interned at WDET for several years, while also working a variety of jobs in Ann Arbor. Then in 1999 I joined the WEMU news team.
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