District studies shorter school day
Marysville Exempted Village School District administrators are studying the length of the school day and assessing whether shortening it is a viable means of reducing costs.
Superintendent Larry Zimmerman told board members at last Monday's board meeting that the length of the school day is one of many measures that are under evaluation as the district continues to work to control costs.
The remarks were made during a follow-up report on a performance audit conducted by the Ohio Auditor's Office last year.
Zimmerman said the district runs about 1,300 classroom hours in a school year, and the Ohio Department of Education minimum requirement is 900.
"It comes out to about two hours a (school) day," he said.
At the high school, he said, shortening the day would require an assessment of currently offered elective courses. He said care needs to be taken because just taking the minimum required courses does not equal the number of total credits needed to graduate.
During his update on the audit, Zimmerman told board members the district's cost per pupil has gone down in the time since the report was completed, in contrast to the costs at other districts used by the auditor's office as comparison districts. He said Marysville's costs are down 5.7 percent in per-pupil expenditure.
Zimmerman said areas where the district has achieved cost savings include transportation, workers' compensation premiums and insurance costs and staff reductions.
"We have tried to get dollar savings out of areas that are 'non-kid' areas," he explained.
"Further reductions are always being looked at," Zimmerman added. "It really comes down to 'What does the community want?'"