2016-17 budget information
Want to learn more?
The School Board has scheduled a series of special meetings to discuss the 2016-17 budget with administrators. Community members are invited to attend and make their voice heard during public comment period:
- 6 p.m. Tuesday, June 21, Administration Building, 4640 S. 144th St., Tukwila: Overview of budget process and revenue by sources
- 6 p.m. Tuesday, July 5, Administration Building, 4640 S. 144th St., Tukwila: Changes impacting the 2016-17 budget
- 6 p.m. Tuesday, July 19, Administration Building, 4640 S. 144th St., Tukwila: Budget information (CANCELLED)
- 6 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 2: Administration Building, 4640 S. 144th St., Tukwila: Budget information and presentation of draft budget
- 6-6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 9, Administration Building, 4640 S. 144th St., Tukwila: PUBLIC HEARING
- RESCHEDULED: 6 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 23, Administration Building, 4640 S. 144th St., Tukwila: School board adoption of 2016-17 budget.
For the first time in many years, we are looking at budget reductions heading into the 2016-17 school year. Major revenue sources are going away, and we cannot continue to spend at current levels without jeopardizing our long-term financial stability. There are several factors contributing to our funding gap. First and foremost, we projected about 120 more students than actually came this year; in fact, we declined about 30 students in total. Our basic-education revenue has decreased correspondingly because the state and federal governments fund students based on head count. Secondly, several grants (such as Race to the Top) have been used to fund on-going expenses (such as staffing) and those grants are expiring this school year. As a result, we have identified $3 million in savings in our operations budget that we need to implement next year. Our top priorities have been to preserve jobs for staff while keeping as many resources as possible in classrooms. As such, we are cutting almost $2 million in non-staff related items such as travel, copying, and food budgets. That’s about two-thirds of the savings we need. We will also shrink our certificated employee pool by about eight positions, saving another $1 million, through involuntary transfers of some staff into positions being vacated through retirements and resignations. We are still looking for areas of reduction as we continue through the budget process.
With that high-level overview, here is more information about our financial outlook and 2016-17 budget:
- Letter to the community, May 23, 2016
- 2016-17 Budget Status and Process Memo, May 20, 2016
- Revenues, Expenditures, and Staffing Analysis, May 20, 2016
- Strategic Plan and State of the District Status Report, May 20, 2016
2016-17 budget timeline
- January: Initial enrollment projections
- January-March: Review of programs
- January 11: State Legislature convenes
- February: Meet with principals and program administrators to review needs
- March-April: Finalize revenue and expenditure estimates
- March 10: Last day of regular legislative session
- March 29: End of legislative session (after special session)
- May 15: By state law, school districts must issue Reduction in Force (RIF) notices to certificated staff members who may not have a contract the following year.
- June: Introduction of recommended budget to school board
- June/July: School board and community open meetings about budget process and financial outlook
- July: Public Hearing for proposed budget
- August: School board adoption of the district budget
Frequently Asked Questions
- Q. Why is spending actually increasing for certain things, like construction, while classroom spending is getting cut?
A. Yes, some areas of the budget are growing. This may seem counterintuitive, but even as we must make reductions in our general operations budget we do have several new sources of revenue that must be used for specific expenditures. For example, we will receive about $99 million in bond funding during the coming four years that is earmarked for materials and project management related to construction projects approved by voters in February 2016. We have also received a $20,000 grant from our risk management pool for consultants and training around race and equity. This money cannot be used for basic-education funding.
- Q. Why were instructional coaches selected for involuntary transfer over other certificated positions?
A. These educators have done exceptional work. Exceptional work. However, their positions were funded temporarily and were meant to be temporary supports. We have been in a position of “adding” for many years, investing in different support models. This includes instructional coaches, assistant principals, academic and behavioral interventionists, and para-educators. We must strategically focus our support models based on available resources and achievement data because we cannot continue to invest in all of the models. We will continue to focus on support models that our data and research suggest are best instructional practices. This includes a comprehensive intervention model (in line with Title I and LAP guidelines); we will also invest in the principal-as-instructional-leader model, which will support the cognitive coaching methodology in our schools.
- Q. How robust is our staffing model?
A. Very. In the past five years, we have gone from 10.11 students per staff member (15 per certificated staff member; 31 per classified staff member) to 8.49 students per staff member (13 per certificated staff member; 24 per classified staff member). Even with next year’s reduction of eight certificated positions, our staffing ratio will still be more robust than in any other year in the past decade except 2015-16, when we actually grew by about 20 certificated staff members (due to Race to the Top grant dollars and projected student enrollment that did not materialize).
This is a quick snapshot of a complex budgeting process, and we hope it will give you some basis for understanding our financial situation and decisions for 2016-17 and beyond. Please do not hesitate to contact Deputy Superintendent Judith Berry at email@example.com if you have specific questions.