Nashua Board of Education reviews $102 million spending plan
Superintendent Mark Conrad’s recommended budget calls for an increase of $5 million, or a 5.2 percent hike in spending over this year. Mayor Donnalee Lozeau has warned board members that the city, and its taxpayers, are strapped and can’t afford to increase school spending by 2.1 percent.
In 2011, about 72 percent of the district’s desktop computers and laptops had been in use for six or more years. This year, only 43 percent of the hardware stock is more than six years old, and 47 percent was bought within the past three years.
BOE member David Murotake asked if the district had what it needed for students to begin taking the Common Core Standards-based assessment tests that will be required in the spring of 2015. Those exams are taken online, and wireless systems at the high schools have had chronic glitches that have kept students from using laptops and other devices.
The 2015 budget recommends spending just over $482,000 on software, $24,500 more than this year. The increased spending would cover the $5,600 for a program to track a more complicated teacher evaluation process that is being implemented, $4,000 to enhance Edulog, an online program that lets parents check bus schedules as well as $10,000 for miscellaneous instruction and tech support.
At the next budget workshop, scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 18, at 7 p.m. in the lecture halls at Nashua High North, the board will review spending for curriculum, utilities and non-instructional costs.
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