Tuesday, April 7, 2020
Superintendent Brett Joyce, left, and School Board Chair Jim Jensen, right.

Triton expecting significant cuts

School board begins looking at reductions

Triton’s school board has authorized administrators to make recommendations for reductions in programs and staff positions.

Superintendent Brett Joyce said he expects the school district will have to cut $250,000 to $300,000 for the 2018-2019 school year. Triton cut about $380,000 for 2017-2018.

Voters last fall turned down an increase in the district’s operational levy. Passage would have increased the levy by $750 per student and raised nearly $1 million in revenue for the school district.

The levy vote was among 11 that failed statewide, according to the Minnesota School Boards Association.

Voters turned down the same levy request in 2016.

“We told the public this was going to come if we didn’t pass it. We’ve arrived,” Joyce said. “We hope to keep it away from education as best we can, but this is going to be challenging. This is going to have to be people and programs, and that’s not good. Hopefully we’re successful this fall and we can put some back for kids if we pass an operating levy.”

The district cut a little more than $370,000 from its budget last spring – close to its goal of $400,000 – and cut extracurricular activities tied to staff.

Joyce said the school board has begun the process of looking at reductions for 2018-2019. 

Board members will approve the overall budget in June.

“We’ve got to get our communities to support the school,” board chair Jim Jensen said. “There have been a lot of negative things in the past about Triton that have been getting spread around. It’s hard to overcome some of that, but I think we can let the public know, convince them that we do need this money just to operate the schools. We just have to come up with new ways to get our message across, and hope for the best.”


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