Last year, nobody could’ve predicted the catastrophe that 2020 would be, or more specifically the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s affected almost every aspect of our lives, and nobody knows how things will look like when we head back next year. However, we do have a slight idea of what the school budget will be, albeit it is still extremely early, and it will probably undergo many changes.
First of all, right now the budget is level funded. This essentially means that any plans made previously will go out the window, and it’s going to be the same as last year’s. However, this means that they will have to cut costs in order to create a budget that meets that criteria.
As of June 8th, the reductions go as follows: 26 open positions will be defunded, including 14 paraprofessionals (anticipated additions), 3 open part time positions, 1 adjustment counselor, 1 open school psychologist, 2 speech therapist (anticipated additions), 3 open SPED positions, 1 open literacy coach, and 1 open team chair, for $954,434. In terms of budget reductions for administrative positions, 2 program managers were defunded for $246,578. 13 part time positions were also reduced for 203,220, including 12 elementary support specialists and 1 recess coach. There were savings from Summer Learning that amounted to $181,202, and $456,318 were cut from the maintenance budget. Altogether, the cuts amount to around 2 million dollars.
Currently, an event called “Car Caravan Against Cuts” is planned for June 18th at 2:30 PM. The flyer described the event’s purpose to be “a rally on wheels to demand the funding our students deserve—now more than ever.” It aims to prevent staff cuts in Malden Public Schools and is being set up by the Malden Education Association. Proper social distancing measures are to be employed at the event, and it’s going to begin in the Early Learning Center parking lot.
All in all, the huge changes that are undergoing mean that things are going to be extremely different next year. Hopefully, Malden is able to make it through without too much hardship going forward.