LASD passes 1 percent tax increase for 2022-23; will allow parents to monitor children’s reading

On a 7-2 vote the Littlestown Area School District (LASD) board of supervisors has approved a one percent tax increase for 2022-23. Voting against the increase were board members Jeanne Ewen and Nicki Kenny.

District Superintendent Christopher Bigger said the budget process had been “long and surgical” and noted that 70% of district homes will see a reduction in taxes despite the 1% increase. The overall decrease is due to an increase in the homestead/farmstead credits that most households receive.

LASD Student Awardees

Bigger said the small increase will provide the district with the opportunity for some much-needed renovations as the designs for the Maple Avenue Middle School replacement project move forward.

The board approved the 2022 Pre-K summer learning program on a 7-1 vote. Kenny voted against funding the program and board member Robert Hahn abstained.

The board also unanimously approved a plan in which parents will have more control over materials their children can access through the district’s libraries. The concern is over books that have been challenged as obscene.

Going forward, the district will allow parents to require that their children receive parental permission before checking out any of the 100 most banned and challenged books as defined by the American Library Association.

Students whose parents opt into the program will be flagged in the library system and will not be able to check out materials without parental approval. The process will be revisited to ensure it is working effectively.

The district gave awards to four students who have displayed leadership in academics, sports, and kindness and have been willing to lead their classmates in various aspects of learning. The awardees are Jordyn Beard, 12th Grade; Connor Myers, 8th Grade; Nathan Evans, 8th Grade; and Cora Bogus, Kindergarten.

Bigger presented a year in review report in which he gave a “30,000-foot-view” of the year.

Bigger said the quality of educators in the district, the excellence of the board, and the support of the community were all integral to the success of the school district. “Our performances exceeded growth expectations with limited learning loss,” he said.

Bigger recapped progress on reaching goals related to graduation policy, facilities, and creating a positive student environment, and said going forward new goals might include increasing the number of students performing at advanced levels, exploring alternative school calendars,  and rethinking early childhood education.

The board also approved initiatives relating to coaching roles, teacher leaders, and sporting equipment.

Featured image caption (l -r; Beard, Myers, Evans, and Bogus)

Barring a need for an unscheduled July meeting the board will next meet on August 13.

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Hannah Eastham is a freelance journalist and travel writer. Hannah has a strong background in writing with a degree from university in Marketing and Communications with a focus in journalism, and has held staff positions on various publications before swapping to freelance. Now a full time educator and a part time freelancer, Hannah enjoys practicing what she teaches with keeping her writing relevant and current.

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