Return to Headlines

February 10, 2023 // Family and Staff Budget Communication

Dear SPS Families and Staff,

I am writing to provide you with a budget update.  Sudbury, like many surrounding communities, is feeling the impact of the post-COVID student and economic impacts.  SPS continually reevaluates spending priorities to maximize student supports. We have reallocated funding within the budget, increased reliance on reimbursable funds, and exhausted one-time funding sources.  Nonetheless, student needs, both academic and behavioral, have compelled me to recommend a budget of $43,976,163, which is $745,460, over the Town Manager’s Guidance. The School Committee approved the recommended budget and is seeking an Override.  Last night, the Select Board voted to put the override question on the ballot for March 27th. 

Among the factors driving the District’s request for additional funding for FY24 are: 

  • In-district busing costs have increased by 25% over the FY22 budget (approximately $275,000)
  • SPS is projecting a $300,000 increase in utility costs based on current usage and rates
  • The State has approved a 14% increase for Special Education Private School tuition ($200,000)
  • 62% of Grade 4 students are not Meeting Expectations as measured by the 2022 MCAS in ELA and 56% in Grade 3, mirroring the state trend attributed to the impact of the pandemic on the acquisition of foundational literacy skills 
  • Students have experienced and reported increases in mental health challenges and suicidality

In the upcoming weeks, we will be engaging the larger community in a conversation about the School Committee’s Override request.  FinCom has scheduled a Budget Hearing for February 15th, and I will meet with various stakeholder groups.  While advocating for a budget that meets the District’s needs, we are required to submit a second budget that meets the Town Manager’s Guidance. The Town Manager’s Budget Guidance does not provide the funding necessary to address academic recovery and the critical mental health needs of our students.  Reductions are required to meet the guidance in a non-override budget.  The chart below represents the impacts of the reductions from the School Committee’s approved budget.  


Monetary Impact

Programming Impact

Increase elementary class size


Class size guidelines would increase to 27 per class in grade 3 to grade 8, 25 per class in grade 2, and 23 per class in kindergarten and grade 1.

Increase middle school class size


Grade 8 homerooms would be reduced from 14 to 12 sections, increasing the number of students in the core subjects.

Smaller sections of UAs would be eliminated, increasing the number of students in the remaining sections.

Align transportation with state mandate of 2+ mile parameter


Transportation reductions would be implemented to reduce the number of buses needed in the fleet.

SPS will only transport students K-6 (863 students) that live greater than 2 miles from their school.  

I will be attending meetings at each school, and I will hold two community forums to describe how these reductions will impact programming and answer questions from the community. The community forums will be at Curtis Middle School on March 7th and March 13th at 7pm.

The Sudbury community has supported its youngest citizens many times over the years and prioritized their needs. I have witnessed strong support of the Override and will continue to advocate for the resources necessary to deliver a quality educational experience for all.  


Brad Crozier