South Bend School Board discusses 2022-23 budget

Published: Oct. 5, 2022 at 11:38 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - The South Bend School Board met Wednesday night to discuss the 22-23 budget.

“We were able to get a 4 percent increase from the state, so pretty happy about that, but it doesn’t really keep up with inflation. So, we had to make some inflation adjustments...We’re also staying with our commitments to the referendum and the things we promised,” said Assistant Superintendent of Business and Finance, Kareemah Fowler.

The corporation said it wants to be financially sustainable and transparent.

The comprehensive budget addresses everything across the board, and lays out what is happening in the schools and what they are paying per student.

Significant changes could be coming too.

“Bus replacement...we had taken bus replacement out, in order for the budget to balance last year. We put those infrastructure items back into the budget,” said Fowler.

The school board recently approved the transfer of its administration building to the City of South Bend, which will help with savings.

Many schools in the district have not utilized their full-building capacity.

There are still ongoing discussions about re-purposing schools so they can provide more resources to students.

“We are in the process of right sizing...and right sizing means several different things, but it also means opportunity for our community and the students that we teach, and our staff. Right sizing is not just about closing buildings...it’s about ensuring that every single student has high-quality education in every corner of the district,” said Fowler.

According to state guidelines, the budget has to pass by November 1.

“I think we have a really good budget that supports students and our administration and all other staff across the district,” said Fowler.

The school board will vote on the 20-23 budget at a public meeting on October 17.

Meantime, the corporation will continue meeting with stakeholders and residents to answer any questions.