The district recently saw a decrease or elimination in some fees, will these fees increase again?

Since the superintendent’s arrival in the district, we have worked hard to reduce or eliminate fees that impact our families. In the FY23 budget, the district was able to reduce the transportation fees for students grade 7-12 and eliminate the middle school extracurricular fees. 

  • The district is able to maintain the reduction of transportation fees for grades 7-12. In FY22, the transportation fee for students in grades 7-12 was $300, reduced in FY23 to $200 per student, and further reduced in FY24 to $100 per student. At this time, the plan for this reduced bus fee remains for FY25, utilizing transportation reserve funds or other one-time revenues.
  • The district is able to maintain the elimination of the middle school extracurricular fees (from $125 to $0).
  • Last year we eliminated transcript fees for middle and high school students and materials fees for Advanced Placement photography, photography and ceramics at Andover High School. 
  • No changes/ increases to AHS athletics & performing arts programs

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1. What is the overall process for the school district’s operating budget?
2. What is the School Committee policy that guides the budget process?
3. What is State Aid to the Budget?
4. How much is the FY25 budget for APS?
5. What is the timeline for the FY25 operating budget process?
6. Why is there a deficit in the FY25 operating budget?
7. What can be done to alleviate the deficit?
8. How much of the annual operating budget is allocated to salaries and compensation?
9. How many positions will be eliminated? If there are positions eliminated or cut, will they all be teachers and instructional assistants?
10. How else will you try to balance the budget?
11. The district recently saw a decrease or elimination in some fees, will these fees increase again?
12. How does the budget relate to enrollment numbers at APS?
13. Over the next ten years is there a model for enrollment rate of students at APS?
14. How is the budget aligned to the class sizes at APS? Will our classes be overcrowded as a result of the budget deficit?
15. Doesn’t the town have enough money to cover the deficit? Why doesn’t the School Committee ask for more money from the town?
16. What is the town and district’s long-range financial planning model?
17. Why can’t we use the town’s 'Free Cash'?
18. Why can’t Excess Levy Capacity be used?
19. Were the Andover Education Association’s negotiating teams aware that the November 2023 Collective Bargaining Agreements might impact staffing levels at APS?
20. Has the district added additional administrative or non-student facing staff in recent years? Don’t these salaries make up a large portion of the operating budget?
21. I keep hearing about coaches for educators and executive directors for instruction at the elementary and secondary levels. What role do they play?
22. Why do I keep hearing about the DESE Comprehensive District Review? How does that inform the budget process?