2014-05-23 / Letters

Clearing up misconceptions about school budget

To the editor:

I would like to thank the readers for this opportunity to clarify some misunderstandings that may result from a recent letter in which a citizen questions why the increase in state aid being received by RSU 21 cannot be returned to the voters to decrease taxes.

In fact, that is essentially what is accomplished by the responsible budget being proposed by the school board for 2014-2015. Because of the increase in revenue, the budget as currently proposed will cause an increase in the tax bill of approximately six-tenths of one percent in Kennebunk.

Any increase to taxes must be considered carefully. Because the board is constantly balancing the needs of students with the impact on taxpayers, it tasked the administration with holding the line on many requests so that the increased revenue would be able to offset much of the normal increases that occur as a result of the constantly rising costs of doing business that we all face.

The result is a budget that maintains the vast majority of current programming, provides instructional technology for our high school students, and sets us, finally, on the course for proper maintenance of the school facilities.

Lastly, I want to make sure all of our readers are aware that Kennebunk High School has once again been identified by U.S. News and World Report as one of America’s Best High Schools.

Among the top 10 high schools in Maine, Kennebunk High School showed the greatest gains over the past year in measures that indicate student preparedness for college.

We are pleased to see recognition for the hard work our educators and students are doing, and thankful to our supportive community members and parents for the resources they continue to provide for the schools. I am hopeful that type of support will continue as voters consider the proposed budget for 2014-15.

Kevin Knight
RSU 21 Board of Directors

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