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DBD-R, Budget Procedures





[Accepted by School Committee10/26/98]

[Reviewed: December 2003]

[Revised: October 2008]





“The mission of the Gardner Public Schools is to prepare, in collaboration with parents, students who are ready upon graduation for the challenges of college and career without remediation.  This will be done in a safe, caring, just and equitable environment.  Our Core Values are Academic Excellence, Creativity, Respect and Responsibility.”




The annual budget is the financial expression of the educational program of the Gardner Public Schools.  It mirrors the goals and objectives of the school system.


The budget process requires acooperative effort on the part of the School Committee and the staff to ensure that by adhering to sound fiscal management practices we will achieve our mission.


Guiding Assumptions:


  1. The basic building block of any school system budget is the students’ needs.
  2. Teachers and staff must be included in the budgetary process..
  3. Allneeds must support the educational program.
  4. Once the School Committee has approved the preliminary budget, the School Committee and the administration will advocate for its passage at the next level.
  5. The School Business Administrator will provide a Budget Schedule and all of the requiredBudget Requisition Forms. 





  1. Teacher identifies her/his needs.
  2. Teacher submits a prioritized list of needs to her/his supervisor. (Department Head, Director, or Building Principal) using the approved and appropriate Budget Forms.



  1.  The Department head or Director reviews all of the identified needs.  Some of the needs may be deleted at this level.  The submitting teacher will be so notified.
  2. The Department submits a combined prioritized list of the department’s needs identifying both the departmental and individual needs to the Building Principal.


Building Principal/Director

  1. The Building Principal/Director reviews all of the departmental needs submitted for her/his approval.
  2. The Building Principal/Director prepares a building/department budget, adds those needs that may have not been identified in the departments and prioritizes the needs.  
  3. The Building Principal/Director reviews the proposed budget with his/her School Council.
  4. The Building Principal/Director submits his/her budget to the Central Office.



Central Office

  1. The Central Office Administratorsreceive and review all of the budgets with the principals/directors.
  2. The Business Administrator develops thebudgets for salaries, utilities and Central Administration.
  3. The Central Office Administrators collaboratively develop the preliminary draft of the budget.
  4. The Superintendent and the Central Office Administratorsreview the budget in its entirety and recommend any necessary changes.


School Committee

  1. The Building Principals/Directors review the budget with the Finance Sub-Committee.
  2. The Superintendent recommends a budget to the Finance Sub-Committee.
  3. The Finance Sub-Committee makes any recommendations for change to the budget.
  4. If there are no changes required, the Finance Sub-Committee recommends that the preliminary budget be forwarded to the School Committee for its approval. 
  5. If there are changes, the budget is returned to the Administration to effect the changes.  Then the budget is resubmitted to the Finance Sub-Committee, and the same process is followed.
  6. The Finance Subcommittee, in its discretion, may host a budget review workshop for the full committee.
  7. The Superintendent presents, at a School Committeemeeting, with the Finance Sub-Committee’s approval, the preliminary budget to the School Committee.
  8. The School Committee will conduct a public hearing for the purposes of community review of the budget. This may be done in conjunction with the superintendent’s presentation of the budget.
  9. The School Committee approves, disapproves, or changes the preliminary budget.  Whenthe budget is approved, it is forwarded to the Mayor’s office.


Mayor’s Office

  1. The Mayor reviews the budget submission and makes his recommendation to the City Council for approval.




  1. Throughout the budget review process, changes may be made to any part of thebudget.
  2. If the Mayor’s final version of the budget that is presented to the City Council for adoption is different than that approved by the School Committee, then discussion with the Finance Subcommittee will take place.

Ultimately, all of the changes made should be communicated to the teachers and staff so that they may plan their purchases for the coming fiscal year.



Typically, the budget process begins in October and concludes in may. This may vary, however, based upon receipt of state aid information and other factors.


Budget Requisition Forms distributed

Department Heads/Directors Receive Budgets from Staff

Principals Receive Budgets from Departments

Principals/Directors Submit Budgets to Central Office

Superintendent Reviews Budget with Central Office And Principals/Directors

Finance Sub-Committee Reviews Budget with Administration, Principals, Directors

Finance Subcommittee Approves Budget

School Committee Receives Budget.

School Committee Conducts Public Hearing.

School Committee Approves Budget.

Mayor presents and City Council Adopts Budget

Finance Subcommittee Revises Budget (if necessary)

School Committee Adopts Final Budget (if necessary)

Start of New Fiscal Year

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