D113A Board of Education requests deeper look into expenditures in strategic plan
LEMONT — District 113A Board of Education has postponed the approval of the five-year strategic plan for more than one month after requesting explicit detail of the proposed expenditures during Tuesday night's meeting.
Superintendent Susan Birkenmaier said the plan has a total of $2.1 million to spend over the next five years and the administration has distributed those resources among staff, facilities, technology, building fund balances and curriculum.
"Every time you make a change, there is a domino effect," Birkenmaier said.
Though class size ranked highest among concerns during the district's community forums, Birkenmaier added that curriculum and professional development hasn't been updated in three years; technology is at the "end of its life" and there are some infrastructure is crumbling.
"We believe this is the best balance to make sure everyone's needs are met," Birkenmaier said.
During Tuesday's meeting, board members didn't disapprove of the plan but shared their concern about the lack of specifics given in each purchase.
Board Member Cindy Kelly said she requested more information on what technology purchases would be made — such as the number of computers needed or system upgrades — and was disappointed by the lack of depth she received.
Board Members Mike Aurelio and Karen Siston agreed saying they would like to understand where the dollars were going for each purchase, why the district is suggesting purchases in which year and how this will impact students and the district.
"We can move things and we are happy to explain the impact of those moves," Birkenmaier said. "We know once we move something it stays in that new category because you want to sustain it."
The request for further explanation on the purchases in the plan comes two weeks after administrators presented the draft strategic plan to the board during the Feb. 5 board meeting.
The plan has taken three months to complete after analyzing resources and needs in the district.
The District 113A Board of Education is looking to review the further detailed plan during its March 19 business meeting, which will be held at 7 p.m. in Old Quarry Middle School.
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