Mon, July 15

Clarkdale-Jerome asks voters to extend override
Extension is strictly to continue educational programs

Kathleen Fleenor

Kathleen Fleenor

CLARKDALE - Clarkdale-Jerome School District is asking district residents to extend the current budget override approved by voters March 14, 2006. The question will be on the Nov. 8 general election ballot.

"The purpose and intent of the use is to provide funding to maintain all-day kindergarten, art instruction for K-8 students and maintain one classroom teacher, said Superintendent Kathleen Fleenor. "The proposed override continuance will provide $139,847."

The override was approved by voters to provide an extra 10 percent to the district's maintenance and operation budget. Overrides are approved for seven years. But the amount provided to the school district starts reducing at the fifth year.

"We are currently in the sixth year of the original override," Fleenor said. "If it is not extended the funding will run out after the 2012 - 2013 school year."

Fleenor said the district is not asking people to pay more than they are paying now. "In our override we didn't ask for any fluff."

She said the override money provides three full-time teachers for the district. One is a full-time classroom teacher, and two are full-time teachers for all-day kindergarten.

The 2006 ballot question was the first time the district had ever asked voters for an override.

"That's the first time we've gone to the voters," Fleenor said.

She said the purpose of the extension is exactly the same as the original override.

"The override extension is strictly for teachers to maintain educational programs for our children," Fleenor said. "We hope the voters will again support these programs."

Fleenor explained that without the override extension, the district will need to examine the all-day kindergarten program and the art program, or the district will have to consider increasing class sizes.

"Those considerations, sadly, would not be beneficial to our students," Fleenor said.