Rochester Schools Superintendent Bolgen Vargas Monday presented a 2014-15 budget proposal in line with his goals of helping young children read, expanding learning time and providing more arts, music and extracurriculars while closing a $42 million budget gap.
The $784 million budget proposal, a 1.4 percent increase from last year, pays for about 28,100 students in city schools and another 4,100 in charter schools. It will need to be passed by the school board and the Rochester City Council before it becomes official.
Among the highlights:
• A nearly $9 million investment in early learning, including $7.1 million to expand full-day prekindergarten to reach 90 percent of 4-year-olds and $1.3 million for increased summer reading programs to stem the learning loss over vacation. Every parent of a prekindergartener will get a free RTS bus pass to ensure the family can get the child to class.