Riverhead School District

Thiele: Riverhead getting $22M in school aid next fiscal year

Riverhead High School

The Riverhead School District is expected to receive nearly $22.22 million in state aid next fiscal year, which represents an 11.42 percent hike for 2014-15, according to a press release issued Sunday by South Fork Assemblyman Fred Thiele’s office.

Figures for other North Fork school districts weren’t available as of Monday morning.

State representatives have focused their efforts this fiscal year on restoring school aid lost by a budget adjustment formula known as the Gap Elimination Adjustment, or GEA, that has taken nearly $6.35 billion away from school districts since 2010.

Mr. Thiele said a major part of the newly proposed $1.1 billion increase in aid, or 5.3 percent, for New York public schools in 2014-15 is the restoration of $602 million in GEA.

The tentative budget also includes a $2 billion bond proposal to improve classroom technology and construct pre-kindergarten classroom space, Mr. Thiele said.

The proposed Smart School Bond Act would be placed on the November ballot for voter approval. If approved, Riverhead would receive about $2.19 million, Mr. Thiele said.

Other education initiatives listed in the tentative budget include: a $1.5 billion investment over five years to support a statewide universal full-day pre-kindergarten program; and a Teacher Excellence Fund to reward each teacher rated “highly effective” through a newly mandated evaluation process with a bonus of up to $20,000.

The Legislature is expected to adopt the tentative $138 billion spending plan before Tuesday’s deadline.

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