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Weston School Board Approves $45 Million Budget

WESTON, Conn. – Members of the Weston Board of Education sang Superintendent of Schools Colleen Palmer’s praises after the unanimous approval of her $45.6 million education budget for 2012-13.

“I applaud the efforts of our superintendent and administration for trying to achieve a proper balance of not only sustaining the quality of our school system but improving it by being extremely mindful of the financial burden to the community,” Board of Education Chairman Philip Schaefer said Tuesday.

Under the approved budget, which still needs to get final approval from the Weston Board of Finance in March, five teachers from Weston Intermediate School and Weston Elementary School will be cut because of a decline in enrollment. Palmer said the cuts would include two kindergarten teachers, one second grade teacher and two fifth-grade teachers.

The approved budget represents an increase of 0.93 percent, or $420,854, from current expenditures. The budget runs under a fiscal calendar that begins July 1.

“It is not by chance that our system has brought in some of the lowest, if not the lowest, school budget percent increases to the region for the past several years,” Schaefer said Tuesday. Here are school spending plans from nearby towns:

• The Westport school system is seeking $100.5 million for its 2012-13 school budget, which represents an increase of 2.5 percent.

• The Fairfield education board recently approved a $149.5 million budget, an increase of 2.6 percent.

• The Wilton school system is proposing a $74.6 million budget, which represents an increase of 2.5 percent.

Board of Education member Ellen Uzenoff said Tuesday that Palmer “brought a very reasonable budget [before the board] and it was not difficult to support it.”

“I feel very, very positive about this, and I know that board feels the same way,” Uzenoff said.

A breakdown of the complete approved 2012-13 budget can be found here .

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