Projected budget up, revenues down

The CK School Board accepted unanimously the final budget estimate for next year, 2002-2003, at its regular Wednesday meeting, Aug. 14.

“Once this is approved,” said Assistant Superintendent for Business & Operations Gary Powell of the inch-thick document, “we’ll prepare a summary — which is what we’ll really be working from.”

CKSD’s budget for the year just ended, 2001-2002, was $94.3 million. $12.9 million of this was part of a voter-approved levy. The 2002-2003 budget is estimated to be $96.7 million.

Powell told the board CKSD gets more money from the feds than any other district in the state. CKSD is on par with the average school district in the state when it comes to money-per-student from the Office of the Superintendent of Schools.

However, “There’s about a $1.2 million difference between the projected budget” and what it is certain the district will be, therefore, “I recommend we don’t spend that amount until we’re sure of it,” said Powell. Also, $1.3 million for special education was included in the projected budget — but likewise, it’s not certain the district will get the money.

“It scares me to have something in the (projected budget) we’re not sure of,” he warned the board. Powell said the district is facing decreasing enrollment, which means less cash from state coffers.

Budget breakdown on major items:

l The co-curricular program will cost $1.3 million and includes supplies, equipment, training, and travel expenses. It includes a variety of after-school activities for K-12 students. Opportunities include both academic and sports for all eight secondary and 14 elementary schools.

l Pool, $146,623.

l Superintendent’s office, $285,939.

l Community relations and internal news letter, $173,264.

l Human Resources (personnel hiring etc.), $645,834.

l Business services, $913,162.

l Board operations, $31,488.

Other budget areas include records, warehouse, Community Schools, the Senior Tax Exchange program, employee assistance, curriculum development, instructional materials, staff development, research, music program, library, gifted program, Montessori, remediation programs, sabbaticals, full-day kindergarten, etc.

Budget recommendations for CKSD’s 2002-2003 school year include:

l Reduce teacher staffing (about four teachers) through attrition to equal dropping enrollment.

l Maintain ending balance at 3 percent of revenue plus $1.3 million.

l Continue Student Achievement Plan (at the board’s discretion).

l Restore third teacher-learning day.

l Juggle the budget to retain the same school programs.

l Not fund any new budget requests.

l Initiate long-range budget planning this fall.

l Replace four buses at $361,000 and four mini-buses, $252,000.

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