LISBON — The proposed budget for the Lisbon school district is nearing its final stages, with a public hearing set for Tuesday evening.

The $19 million budget includes general and adult education, representing a 5% increase from the current spending plan. Superintendent Richard Green said the increase was largely due to rising costs for staff and benefits, which makes up roughly 70% of the total budget.

The local share will increase by $317,218, or 4.2%. The estimated tax rate increase is not yet available.

Included in the budget is an additional third grade teacher, a fifth grade teacher, middle school literacy specialist and a high school math teacher. In a previous meeting, School Committee members discussed the need for extra teaching staff in these areas to reduce class sizes and improve the quality of education.

The literacy specialist will be focused on supporting students who struggle with grade level literacy expectation in social studies and science.

An extra prekindergarten teacher will also be hired, increasing the enrollment of the early childhood education program by more than a third. This position will be paid with state funding.

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The budget was initially proposed at $18.8 million in February. While the total school budget has since increased by $200,000, the calculated local share has decreased by $30,000.

The district is requesting $2.8 million more in local funds than the state funding model recommends. These funds are necessary for essential programs which are not fully covered by the state, according to the School Committee.

These programs include cocurricular and extracurricular activities, substitute pay, special education and operational costs for school cafeterias.

Green told the School Committee that paving projects and repairs to the high school’s roof are the district’s top priority capital improvement projects for the coming year.

The Town Council will hold a public hearing at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the town office for the school and capital improvement budgets. On Tuesday, May 17, the council will vote on whether to approve the budget, which would then be put before voters June 14.


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