Messages from the Superintendent:

November 23, 2016

Dear Parents, Staff and Concerned Citizens:

I wish to take this opportunity to wish you and your family a happy and healthy Thanksgiving holiday. 

Personally, I am thankful for the opportunity to serve you, your children and the faculty and staff of the school district.  Over the next few days, as we contemplate all that we have to be thankful, please join me by keeping those who are less fortunate in our thoughts and prayers no matter what form they take. 

In closing, I wish to thank you for your continued support and hope you have a safe, happy and healthy holiday weekend.

Best wishes to you for a wonderful Thanksgiving.

I remain very truly yours,
Gary S. Mala
Superintendent of Schools
Avon Public Schools
gmala@avon.k12.ct.us 

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November 23, 2016

Dear Parents, Staff and Concerned Citizens:

I appreciate having this opportunity to communicate with you once again to inform you about the district’s budget building process for the upcoming school year.  The process we follow is one that I have found to be most effective and efficient and has been refined and reviewed over the numerous years I’ve worked on this difficult and arduous task.

Following the Operating Budget Development Time Line, the district began its structured process to develop the 2017-2018 operating budget in early September.   Input was sought through numerous meetings with district leaders, administrators, Town officials, as well as the community at the Community Input session held on October 6th.  Working collaboratively with the district leaders the actual process to build the budget commenced, using all the gathered input and information, a proposed budget was developed.  I presented the Superintendent’s Proposed Budget for the 2017-2018 school year at the November 15th Board of Education meeting. 

Last night, the Board of Education held a Community Input session where the budget was once again presented and the community was given an opportunity to share their thoughts on the proposed budget.  If you were unable to attend and have comments or questions regarding the budget, an email address has been set up for your communications: 20172018budget@avon.k12.ct.us

The proposed operating budget can be found on our website, including additional budget information and responses to questions asked: http://www.avon.k12.ct.us/district/district/pages/budget.  This website will be frequently updated as the budget process continues according to the Operating budget Development Time Line. 

As stakeholders in our schools and town, I hope you find this information to be useful.  I believe open communication is the key to understanding the Superintendent’s 2017-2018 Proposed Budget and how it was developed.

I remain very truly yours,

Gary S. Mala
Superintendent of Schools
Avon Public Schools
gmala@avon.k12.ct.us 

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November 22, 2016

David Kimball is appointed to the position of Avon Middle School Principal.  To read more click Press Release

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November 14, 2016

To read the press release regarding an initiative to offer computer science for all in grades K-12, click here: Press Release

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November 9, 2016

Dear Parents, Staff and Concerned Citizens:

I am pleased to communicate with you once again and hope this message finds you well.

In preparation for building the annual, proposed budget for the 2017-2018 fiscal year and the deliberations regarding what will be ultimately proposed by the Board of Education and Town Council, I wish to share with you information that has been discussed between the Chairs of the above mentioned elected Boards, Town Manager and District Central Leadership staff.

The following information has been discussed as the possible parameters for what is requested for next year:

In May of 2016, Bill No. 502 was adopted by the General Assembly.  This legislation includes the creation of a “soft cap” on annual increases to municipal expenditures. The cap is set at 2.5% or the rate of inflation, whichever is greater.  If the cap is exceeded, funding through a specific grant line item to all cities and towns is reduced by $0.50 for every $1.00 over the cap. Additionally, language explaining this must be included on the tax bills that resident and property owners receive.  

The law also identifies line items that can be excluded from the calculation of the cap.  Exclusions include, but are not limited to: debt service, special education, some capital expenditures and payments on unfunded pension liabilities.  

Modeling has been prepared by the Town’s Finance Office to gauge the potential impact of the soft cap by comparing the FY (fiscal year) 2016 and FY (fiscal year) 2017 budgets.  The calculations take the adopted budgets for each year and then apply the exclusions (items that can be excluded from the calculation of the cap).

The end result is that the year over year budget increase from FY 15/16 to FY 16/17 is 2.48%.  Therefore, there would have been no penalty.  In addition, all things being equal, a 2.5% increase from this year’s budget to next year’s limits the request for all new funds at $1,700,000 in the aggregate Town budget for next year. 

This information as it has been explained was discussed by the Chairs of each elected Board and will serve as the parameters for the 2017-2018 Town budget.

As always, I thank you again for the privilege of serving you and your children.  I wish you a relaxing and enjoyable rest of the week.

Very truly yours,
Gary S. Mala
Superintendent of Schools
Avon Public Schools        

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November 4, 2016

Dear Parents, Staff and Concerned Citizens:

I am pleased to communicate with you once again and hope this message finds you well.

This past summer, the District’s extended leadership team, consisting of department directors, school administrators, the Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning and myself, met for our annual Reflective Session.  The meeting is designed for the extended leadership team to prepare for the new school year by reflecting on the past school years; thinking of the challenges that were faced as well as the accomplishments achieved. 

I would like to share with you what the extended leadership created as they reflected on the many positive accomplishments and changes of the last five years.  The attached list was generated and categorized using the three components of our district’s Strategic Plan – Culture, Achievement and Communication.   It is my hope that as you read through the list you too will reflect on where we were as a district not so long ago and what has been accomplished. 

Please join with me in extending appreciation to the leadership team as well as to all our staff, for their passionate and persevering work in making these accomplishments possible. 

As always, I thank you again for the privilege of serving you and your children.  I wish you a relaxing and enjoyable weekend.

Very truly yours,
Gary S. Mala
Superintendent of Schools
Avon Public Schools         

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November 1, 2016

Dear Parents, Staff and Concerned Citizens:

I am very privileged to communicate with you once again and hope this message finds you well and warm with the cooler weather.

As we continually strive to improve our lines of communication with parents and the community, I am proud to present to you a newly created brochure regarding Avon High School which was custom designed through the talents of an Avon parent.  The Avon High School brochure is the first of six planned brochures – one for each school, including one for the district.  Continuing the concept of the high school brochure, each brochure will highlight the unique character of the school, describe the rigorous curriculum, and showcase student achievements.   

Families in the Avon Public Schools will be receiving the high school brochure shortly.  An electronic copy of the brochure is available on our district website at: http://www.avon.k12.ct.us/sites/avonctps/files/file/file/ahs_full_brochure.pdf.

After you have reviewed the brochure, I am sure you will join with me in taking pride in Avon’s exemplary high school and the achievements of its students. 

As always, I thank you again for the privilege of serving you and your children.

Very truly yours,
Gary S. Mala
Superintendent of Schools
Avon Public Schools

To access previous messages from the Superintendent, please click here.