Dear Parkland Community,
Welcome to the 2016-2017 school year.
Welcome back to school! As this newsletter goes to print, we are preparing for another school year in Parkland and making plans to welcome approximately 9,200 students into our K-12 classrooms.
It is with great pleasure that I share that Pennsylvania completed and balanced a 2016-17 state budget in July. Both the House and the Senate passed a revenue bill, a School Code bill and a Fiscal Code bill. As a result, the District will receive a 2016-17 Basic Education Funding increase in the amount of $537,446. This dollar amount is $337,446 more than Parkland had planned to receive when it created the final budget for adoption in June. Special Education Funding for Parkland is projected to be $46,880 more than what was budgeted. Therefore, the total increase in funding over what the District had planned for is estimated to be $384,326 and will offset the current year’s expenditure plans.
I am happy to share some important information regarding capital improvement initiatives that the Parkland School District has implemented. The administration recommended and the Board subsequently approved a fourth year of a capital improvement plan that included the borrowing of approximately $10M. This has allowed Parkland to maintain high quality facilities that are safe and secure as well as mitigate financial challenges in the future that could surface if maintenance issues were ignored. This was an extremely challenging summer for our maintenance department as they needed to perform normal summer tasks as well as prepare our schools for the implementation of full-day kindergarten. This required the installation of toilet facilities in classrooms at Schnecksville and Ironton to accommodate full-day kindergarten. The District also added modular classrooms at Fogelsville and Jaindl to manage increasing enrollment in the southwest portion of the District. Parkway Manor received some roof work and concrete repairs were made at Fogelsville, Kernsville and Parkway Manor to maintain a safe environment for students and staff. Orefield and Springhouse received large roofing section replacements. Springhouse also had some outdoor site lighting replacement work along with work on the doors at the front entrance and the entrance adjacent to the cafeteria. PHS received new cooling towers, a resurfaced track and new trees and shrubs in the buffer zone behind the baseball field.
2016-17 School Year Theme
The Parkland School District holds a long-standing tradition of annual district themes that serve as a framework to guide the efforts of the entire school community. We decided to replicate the Parkland School District theme for the 2016-2017 school year by focusing our attention on “Academics, Arts & Athletics…..Educating the Whole Child.” These areas cross connect and reinforce each other through a variety of programs, systems and activities. Within these developmental pillars of a comprehensive educational program, we have established requirements for completion and advancement.
We encourage you to peruse this back-to-school edition of the Parkland School District newsletter. Join us for the Annual Back-to-School Carnival on September 17, which Parkland High School Student Council organizes for all families in the Parkland School District to enjoy. On October 7, the Parkland High School Fall Play, “Boeing, Boeing” will take the stage, and on Election Day, November 8th, we hope you will dine at Outback Steakhouse to help us raise funds for the Parkland School District Education Foundation which has given $635,000 to Parkland Schools for innovative projects since its inception just five years ago. There is so much on our calendar for the young and old. I hope to see you at an upcoming event!
It is my wish that all Parkland residents will get the chance to visit a Parkland School to enjoy an academic, arts or athletic event this year. Our schools are thriving thanks to your support and we want you all to partake in the wonderful ways our youth are learning and growing.
Richard T. Sniscak, Superintendent of Schools