Valley View schools spell out cuts if voters reject March levy

Valley View Intermediate School was built in 1922 in Germantown and added onto between 1951 and 1962. JEREMY P. KELLEY / STAFF
Valley View Intermediate School was built in 1922 in Germantown and added onto between 1951 and 1962. JEREMY P. KELLEY / STAFF

At a 5:30 p.m. school board meeting today, Valley View schools Superintendent Ben Richards will present a long list of budget reductions that would take effect if the district’s March 17 tax levy is rejected.

The list includes elimination of elementary school music, art and gym classes, elimination of all district clubs, junior high sports and school dances, increase of high school pay-to-play to $400 a sport, reduction of special education and secretarial staff and more.

MAY 2019: Valley View seeks tax levy paired with cuts

Richards said despite $1.5 million in cuts over the past two years, the district projects a deficit of $1.1 million for next year. He said the district’s teacher salary scale is already one of the lowest in Montgomery County.

The tax levy on the March 17 ballot has two parts, but residents will vote yes or no on the whole package rather than voting separately. The property tax piece is a 5.5-mill, 37-year bond to pay for construction of a new school. The income tax piece is a 0.5% increase of Valley View’s existing school income tax, to avoid a deficit.

2017 STORY: Valley View has tense fight over bond issue

The list of budget adjustments if the levy were to be rejected also says grades K-6 would have a shorter school day, and preschool tuition would double from $800 per year to $1,600.

“There’s not a thing on that list that I think is good,” Richards said. “But this is the fiscal situation that we’re in right now, and if we aren’t successful (on the levy) it’s unfortunately going to be reductions that significantly affect the educational climate and culture we have at Valley View.”

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