Friday, May 17, 2013
The Ferguson-Florissant School District Board of Education wants community input before making decisions regarding the district's future. The district faces as much as a $10 million budget shortfall.
The Ferguson-Florissant School District has begun surveying the community to get a better sense of the community’s wants and needs for the district. The 50-question survey will be used to guide the future of the district, according to a district press release. With the district facing as much as a $10 million shortfall, the Ferguson-Florissant Board of Education is wanting more input from the community on its programs, schools and opinions on the possibility of a tax increase. The survey asks respondents such questions as quality of education, value of tax dollars, safety of schools and district performance. The survey will be open to community members for two weeks. After the two-week period, the board will review and analyze the results …
Thursday, May 16, 2013
The board of education weighs different scenarios for bond issue needs.
The addition of a new bond issue moved closer the realm of a strong possibility last week during the Ferguson-Florissant Board of Education meeting. The committee, represented by Lorenzo Boyd, senior vice president of public finance for Stifel Nicolaus and Co., presented the board’s options of a no-tax increase as well as with a tax increase, which could be up to $51 million. With a no-tax increase, the district could issue as much as $23 million in bonds, Boyd said during his presentation. There are options for as much as a 20-cent increase, and for example, a 5-cent increase could result in up to $30 million in bonds. A 20-cent increase would be needed for $51 million. For personal property taxes, that could mean a number of scenarios. …
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
The new system will allow parents to pay ahead for children's meals through PayPams.
Milk money as many know it could be a thing of the past in the Ferguson-Florissant School District. Starting next school year, the district will offer an online prepayment plan for students’ meals. The new system, PayPams, will allow parents to pay for meals online or by phone for the student’s account. From there, parents can track what their child buys to eat, how much money is on the account and even set up automatic payments. Ferguson-Florissant food service specialist Priscilla Urban said a lot of the benefit of the new program goes to parents and students, but in the schools’ cafeterias lines will move quicker and make things smoother. Urban, who is also a parent, said she used the system in another area school district, and it …
Saturday, May 11, 2013
Four schools were recently awarded the district's Green Ribbon Award.
The Ferguson-Florissant Board of Education awarded four of its schools for their sustainable efforts Wednesday night. Central Elementary, Commons Lane Elementary, Ferguson Middle School and Mark Twain Student Support Center each received a Green Ribbon Award for Sustainability. Central and Commons Lane each received a platinum award, Ferguson received a gold award and Mark Twain received the silver award. Each school was presented a certificate and an ecology flag. The district developed the awards through its green initiative. Schools were asked to submit nominations for the award. Each nominated school was judged on five criteria area—energy, recycling/waste reduction, reducing water run-off and erosion, school gardens and environmental …
Thursday, May 9, 2013
The board unanimously approves the allocation from the 2010 no-tax-increase bond issue.
The Ferguson-Florissant Board of Education approved a $5.7 million capital budget Wednesday night for district improvements in 2013-2014. The funding comes from a $25 million no-tax-rate-increase bond issue passed by voters in August 2010. According to a St. Louis Post-Dispatch article, the district bought bonds to pay for facility and technology upgrades. No tax money is needed, and the bonds can’t be used to pay for items such as salaries and benefits, transportation, utilities, textbooks or other supplies. Last year, the board allocated $5.8 million of bond funding for improvements. The allocation comes as the board and district consider another bond issue for other district and infrastructure needs. Financial Director Laura Modrusic …
Wednesday, May 8, 2013
The board's agenda looks at a number of financial issues, including the budget and possible bond issue.
When the Ferguson-Florissant Board of Education convenes Wednesday, a good portion of its agenda will focus on the finance side of the district. The board will receive a 2013-2014 budget update, a capital/bond budget and get an update from the bond issue exploratory committee. Earlier this year, the district announced it would be facing a $10 million deficit in the next school year, but in March the board received a budget draft with almost $7 million in cuts. Last month, the board heard a bit about the formation of a committee who would look into the possibility of a bond issue for the district’s needs, including facility infrastructure improvement. For a full look at Wednesday’s agenda, check out the Ferguson-Florissant School District …
Monday, April 29, 2013
The center received three grants that will help teach students and develop teachers.
The Challenger Learning Center, which has a partnership with the Ferguson-Florissant School District, recently received a total of $45,000 in grants that will aid student and teacher programs for the center. Express Script Foundations, Girls Inc. of St. Louis and the Missouri Space Grant Consortium each provided $15,000 to the learning center through their respective programs and partnerships. The learning center provides simulated space missions and also provides education in science, technology, engineering and math as well as team-building and critical thinking. “The Express Scripts Foundation supports efforts that will help educate and inspire future generation of scientists to use critical thinking to help improve our community,” …
Sunday, April 28, 2013
Rega Wesley-Stewart received $1,000 for her commitment to education Thursday.
Updated Sunday, 11:30 p.m. Another Florissant educator has been bestowed a great honor by Peabody Energy. Thursday, Peabody Energy Leaders in Education awarded McCluer High School math teacher Rega Wesley-Stewart $1,000 for her demonstrated commitment and compassion toward students. Stewart is one of 31 honorees of the St. Louis metropolitan area. Last month, Peabody Energy honored Brown Elementary School Principal Matthew Phillips. "Ms. Wesley-Stewart is an outstanding instructional leader," Gary Spiller, principal of McCluer High School, said. "She has the ability to both challenge and show compassion to our students, and we are so proud that she was selected for this recognition." Wesley-Stewart strives to improve her community and …
Sunday, April 21, 2013
The school district will have its first day of school, Aug. 12.
The Ferguson-Florissant School District will get school underway Aug. 12 for its 2013-2014 school year. The district published its calendar on the site and on Facebook earlier this week. The Board of Education approved it during its February meeting. The calendar includes 177 student attendance days, where the 2012-2013 calendar had 179 student attendance days. According to a memo by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, school districts meet state guidelines under three options, which include: Spring break will be held March 24-28, and the year is set to end May 22. For the full calendar, check out the Ferguson-Florissant School District website. To see other stories about the 2013-2014, see:
Saturday, April 20, 2013
The nature area opens its facilities to the public Saturday for fun and education.
Ferguson-Florissant School District residents have an opportunity to get closer to nature and animals Saturday. The district will host, “Little Creek Earth Day 2013,” Saturday, 8 a.m.-noon at Little Creek Nature Area. Earth Day is April 22. During the day, families are able to come out and interact with the area’s animals, including sheep, goats, chickens and lambs as well as learn about composting, rain barrels and gardening. The 97-acre public site serves as an outdoor classroom of sorts where students can learn about ecology, environmental science, field biology and living history.The site boasts a museum, office space, high school classroom with pavilion, picnic tables and restrooms and an elementary building with classrooms. The farm …