District to offer early ed program

All-day, every day kindergarten, busing for high school students instituted
Alissa Widman Neese
Dec 22, 2013
Clyde-Green Springs Schools will join all other Sandusky County school districts and offer all-day, every day kindergarten for the first time next school year.

All five board members agreed on Monday to the decision, which they believe will provide a better educational foundation for their district’s youngest students.

The district currently provides 2 1/2-hour morning and afternoon kindergarten sessions.

“We’ve been talking about this since I walked in the door,” first-year superintendent David Stubblebine said. “We’ve received a lot of positive feedback. It’s something that’s very in-demand in this district”    Implementing all-day, every day kindergarten will eliminate the need for the midday bus route that transported morning kindergartners home and afternoon kindergartners to their school building.

The district will use those saved costs to reinstate busing for high school students, Stubblebine said.

Board members agreed to eliminate high school busing this past year, when a gloomy financial outlook called for drastic district-wide reductions totaling about $1 million.

Clyde-Green Springs Schools is now set to receive an additional $600,000 in state funding in the current school year and $1 million in the 2014-15 school year, according to state budget estimates.

The district is now projecting a small cash surplus at the end of both years — about $6,200 this year and $26,300 next year — with a total annual budget of about $21 million, according to its updated five-year financial forecast.

The forecast accounts for the costs of both all-day, every day kindergarten and reinstated high school busing, although the number of kindergarten teachers the district will need to hire next year could vary depending on enrollment numbers.

Monday’s moves came about two months after board members agreed to reinstate the district’s elementary music programs, which they also eliminated this past year because of a lack of funding.

Nonetheless, the district still hasn’t restored all its programming to acceptable levels, Stubblebine said.

“Even though this is exciting, great news, we’re not there yet,” he said. “We’re still digging ourselves out of the cuts made last year because of the budget situation and recession”