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Budget does not exceed tax cap

The proposed $27.9 million budget for the Fredonia Central School District does not go over the tax cap designated for the district by the state, Superintendent Paul DiFonzo said at Tuesday night's Board of Education meeting.

The proposed spending plan for 2012-13 increases the tax levy by 2.1 percent. Under the formula applied the state, the district could have raised the tax levy by up to 3.52 percent.

"It has never been 2 percent," DiFonzo said. "Our budget stays within our tax cap."

DiFonzo also reported there will be a second proposition on the May 15 ballot, seeking voter approval to spend up to $200,000 to reconstruct one of the brick walls in the pool area, which he said is unsafe.

If the measure is approved, the district would receive state aid to help foot the bill. If the proposition is voted down, there would be no state aid and the district would have to pay for the project out of pocket.

John Forbes, business administrator, said the state aid would cover around 82 percent of whatever is not covered by the district's insurance.

The annual hearing on the budget is set for 6:30 p.m. May 8 in Room 636 of the high school.

The budget vote will be from 2 to 9 p.m. May 15 in the high school cafeteria. Absentee ballots are now available in the school district office.

Math teacher Darrin Paschke gave an overview of a "flipped classroom," a teaching concept he has been trying with success in his geometry class.

Paschke said he videotapes a lesson, which his students access at home on computer via a closed website. The students watch the video, then come to class the next day to do homework relating to the lesson and also to discuss it.

This new approach, Paschke said, allows him time for more individualized attention with his students during classroom time. He added students can watch the video several times to review it, if they don't grasp the lesson concepts the first time through.

Paschke noted the average test score in his class has increased substantially since he has been us The board heard an overview of the music department from Kevin Wade and Andrew Bennett. Bennett said that he wished there were sufficient resources for more music students to possess their own musical instruments. Students who do not own them, he said, can only practice in the school, while those students who do own instruments have the extra advantage of practicing at home.

It was announced that this year's valedictorian is Noah Rankin and the salutatorian is Michael Hawk.