Forest City students’ success costing district

BY CAITLIN HEANEY

Times-Shamrock Writer

Forest City Regional School District might look at how its students attend trips now that an upcoming conference will cost more than twice what it did last year.

Twenty-three students qualified to attend the Future Business Leaders of America State Leadership Conference in Hershey in April, 10 more than in 2010. And with two advisers going, the trip will cost $10,733.

Superintendent Robert J. Vadella called that price a “sizeable increase” over last year’s trip, which cost $5,464.

“I think we need to examine how many we can send in the future given financial constraints,” he said. “You want to send kids to worthwhile events, but the question is how much can you afford?”

Students participate in business- and technology-related competitions to qualify for the state conference.

The higher cost to the district came about not only because more students qualified but also because some fees increased from 2010 to 2011.

Last year, Forest City paid $248.50 per student and $302 per adviser for lodging and meals, district business manager Kathleen Kaczka said. Those amounts increased to $257 for students and $312 for advisers this year.

Since the competition starts early Monday, the group will stay over Sunday night, an extra $1,280. Transportation is $700; conference registration is $1,750, and substitute teachers for the advisers are $540.

The district knows to expect certain trips each year, Vadella said, like physics class trips to Six Flags Great Adventure, and it budgets for field trips and travel.

The FBLA payment will come out of that money, and Vadella does not expect the district will have to change any other trips.

“We know certain things are going to come,” he said. “We don’t always know the numbers. We have to look at this number, because this is a large number.”

In other business, the district has a new board member. At its meeting Monday night, Jan. 10, the school board accepted the resignation of Nancy Marcinkus, a three-year member representing Region 5, Pleasant Mount, who left for personal reasons.

The board interviewed two candidates for her replacement, Vadella said, and picked Margaret Ennis.

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