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Bennington, VT: Higher school budget costs due to out-of-district placement for SPED students

Nov 30, 2017, Bennington (VT) Banner: SVSU draft budget up less than 1 percent http://www.thetimesnews.com/news/20171130/qampa-school-overcrowding-questions-at-abss-county-meeting At first glance, the budget appears set to increase 3.82 percent, or $924,837. However, the vast majority of this increase comes from the $728,480 that is shifting from local boards to the SVSU after the latest round of collective bargaining moved all paraeducators from being employees of the local boards to employees of the SU. No additional money is actually being spent, as the cost is simply shifting to the SVSU budget. Taking that into account, the real increase is $196,357, or 0.81 percent over this current year's budget. … Special education, including elementary, secondary, and OnPoint services, will increase by 0.18 percent, or $28,616. The largest line increase comes from transportation, which increased $119,307, in part due to the projected new contract and in part due to an increase in student out-of-district placement needs. "I feel like we're in a really good place to provide students with what they need," said Special Education Director Wendy Pierce. The curriculum department's budget would remain largely the same from this year, up only 0.11 percent, or $884.