Denair Trustees OK $14.7 Million Budget for 2018-19

With little comment, the Denair Unified School District Board of Trustees unanimously passed a 2018-19 budget Thursday night that projects continued enrollment growth at the lower grades but increasingly expensive state-mandated contributions to employee retirement funds.

The district expects to spend $14,782,733 in the next school year – about $1.5 million less than the current fiscal year that ends June 30. The difference, explained Chief Business Officer Linda Covello, is one-time investments made this year in salary payouts to staff, technology upgrades, textbooks, and teacher training and other professional development.

The 2018-19 budget projects district enrollment at 1,225, broken down this way:

Enrollment is critical for school districts because state funding – their largest revenue source – is based upon how many youngsters there are on each campus.

Continue reading “Denair Trustees OK $14.7 Million Budget for 2018-19” »

DUSD’s Proposed 2017-18 Budget Includes $1 Million to DECA Expansion, New Textbooks

Submitted by Denair Unified School District

Fast-growing Denair Elementary Charter Academy will add classrooms for its expanding dual-immersion program and students across the district will benefit from new textbooks under a proposed 2017-18 budget discussed Thursday night by school officials.

The $15.7 million spending plan projects the use of more than $1 million in so-called “one-time funds” received from the state over the past few years.

Linda Covello, chief business officer for the Denair Unified School District, said about $415,000 will go toward purchase and installation of up to 10 portable classrooms at DECA in time for the 2018-19 school year.

The elementary campus must add two classes each year for students in the dual-immersion program, which teaches children in Spanish and English. It started at the kindergarten level in 2015-16 and expands to each grade level as the first students advance.

Another $430,000 in the proposed budget will be directed toward the purchase of new textbooks in Spanish, English language arts and math across the district, Covello said. About $120,000 will be used to replace two computer labs at DECA and $100,000 will buy eight to 10 Chromebook carts (portable computers used across the district).

“We really want to expand our programs to entice students to come to the district,” Covello said.

The one-time funds have accumulated the past three years, she said. By law, they cannot be spent on ongoing expenses such as employee salaries.

Superintendent Aaron Rosander said rather than increasing overall funding for education, Gov. Jerry Brown has preferred to give districts one-time funds if the state has “extra” money at the end of its fiscal year.

Denair’s proposed 2017-18 budget anticipates an Average Daily Attendance of 1,279 students, an increase of 16 students from this year. ADA is the basis for state funding. Projections are for 2% attendance growth in 2018-19 and 3% in 2019-20. Continue reading “DUSD’s Proposed 2017-18 Budget Includes $1 Million to DECA Expansion, New Textbooks” »

Denair Unified School District Passes Budget

DUSD_logo-SmallDenair school trustees passed a lean budget Thursday night while reassuring community members that the district is committed to sustained academic excellence even as it keeps a watchful eye on expenses.

After hearing an analysis by the district’s financial team, trustees voted 4-0 to pass the $8.15 million budget for 2014-15. The district expects to have a $130,000 deficit, but will not require any financial assistance from the Stanislaus County Office of Education. The past two years, the county office loaned the district $2.4 million to prevent state takeover.

By 2015-16, Denair officials expect to have about $370,000 more in revenue than expenses.

“We want to let parents know that we’re not just in survival mode,” Trustee John Plett said after the meeting. “We want the highest quality classes in arts, in math, in science, in English; we’ve not lost sight of that. We’ve hit a speed bump the past couple of years, but students still can get a quality education here.”

Plett joined Trustees Kathi Dunham-Filson, Carolyn Brown and Robert Hodges in passing the budget. Trustee Sandi Dirkse was absent.

“Even though the budget is lean, nothing has been taken away,” said Dunham-Filson. “We still do music. We still do languages. We still do ag. We still do many programs.” Continue reading “Denair Unified School District Passes Budget” »

Budget Picture Brighter for Denair Unified School District

DUSD_logo-SmallThe Denair Unified School District’s financial situation continues to improve, with a major reduction in deficit spending in 2014-15 and the anticipation of a small surplus the following school year.

Trustees listened to a presentation and heard public comment about the proposed $8.15 million budget for 2014-15 at their meeting Thursday night. Though the district expects to spend about $130,000 more than it receives in revenue, there is no financial assistance required from the Stanislaus County Office of Education. The past two years, the county office loaned the district $2.4 million to prevent state takeover.

By 2015-16, Denair officials expect to have about $370,000 more in revenue than expenses.

“We remain on a fiscal recovery plan. We’re exactly on the trajectory we had projected,” said Superintendent Aaron Rosander, who took over in February. “This puts us right on our target so that 24 months from now the ink is black.”

Trustees will take a final vote June 26 on the 2014-15 budget.

The proposed spending plan reflects the staffing cuts and 8% salary reductions agreed upon earlier this year by the district and its employees. In February, the board eliminated the equivalent of 19 full-time teaching jobs and one administrative position to reflect declining enrollment. All but eight of those positions already were vacant or will not be filled after employees retired at the end of the recently completed school year. Continue reading “Budget Picture Brighter for Denair Unified School District” »