February 2009 SUPERINTENDENT’S REPORT

 

1.    Curriculum.  Math Committee is nearing completion of the project.

 

2.    Facilities.  See Business Manager’s Reports.

 

3.    Public Relations. 

 

4.    Staff.  The board previously approved an out-of-state student travel request for the HS Physics/Chemistry classes to attend the Great America Math/physics day in California April 16-19.  The dates of this trip have been changed to April 2-5 due to a school conflict.

 

5.    Other. 

a.    Agenda items.

The new MS tour begins at 6:00 p.m.  Meet at the front of the old MS.

09.b.  Information will be emailed.  Hard copies in packets and at meeting.

14.  Proposed policies will be posted on the web site.  Mrs. Cruzan will bring hard copy to meeting.

15.  Information will be emailed from Higdon.

16.  Committee DRAFT charge will be emailed.

17.  The MS is requesting March 30 as an inservice.  Request from the MS Site Council was previously relayed to the school board.

18.  Information regarding Bridgeway was emailed previously.

 

b.    Superintendent will be absent March 30-April 3.

c.    Donations:

                                          i.    Beaverton School District.  150 student chairs, health room couch, tables, 3 fire-proof and 4 regular file cabinets, credenza and office furniture.  Est value = $2500.

                                        ii.    MICROBI Enterprises.  Paid transportation costs for 4th grade trip to state capitol.  Est value = $300.

                                       iii.    Liberty Bank.  11 HP/DC530 computer towers.  Estimated                 value = $1650.


RE: Agenda Item 09 b.

 

Funding Options

 

          Creswell School District has not received its full measure of support from the state due to cut backs in December.  We anticipate further cut backs in March based on the February 20 revenue forecast.

 

          For the remainder of 2008-9 school year, the school board has the following options:

  1. Reduce staff.  This would be accomplished by declaring a fiscal exigency, meaning the district does not have the means to meet payroll and/or other expenses.  Defending a fiscal exigency with a projected ending fund balance would be a mathematical exercise.  Reducing staff in mid-year would be termed a “reduction in force” or RIF and is covered in ORS 342.934(1).  RIFs are addressed in collective bargaining agreements with the labor unions.  The district would be required to give a ten day notice for cause: “lack of funds.”  The number of staff whose remaining salaries would cover the shortage from the state in March would depend on how large the shortage is.  I would stress at this point that if there is no March shortage, our current situation does not necessitate a declaration “lack of funds.”  RIFing staff however, is not a practical method to cover what is considered the low end of the cut back, $300K.  First, $300K would be the equivalent of approximately 20 or more staff from the bottom of the seniority lists.  Second, the teacher’s list is disproportionately comprised of elementary teachers and even if the number of staff could be pro-rated across the district we would still be so severely short-handed as to render the education of most students as irrelevant.  We would be RIFing many more teaching staff than other work categories but no employee group would be excluded.
  2. Take down the ending fund balance (EFB).  The district could expend into the EFB to the detriment of future budget years.

 

For the remainder of the 2008-9 school year, the school community (that is: the employees in concert with the school board) has these options:

  1. Reduce the number of school days in the calendar.  Because the length of the school year is a working condition the school board would need to negotiate this option.  If this were an option for consideration, again the math would determine how many days need to be cut depending on the severity of the March cut back and if any portion of the cut back can be filled with EFB or other savings in the current budget.  Once a number of days was determined by formula, the next issue is which days to cut.  There are student days, a holiday, a grade day and/or a parent-teacher conference day to choose from.
  2. Reduce salary.  The same bargaining units could decide to forgo salary increases or take some other reduction in salary and continue to work the school calendar. 
  3. A combination of reduction in days and salary reduction.  i.e., give up salary on holiday and grade day and not work either day, plus forgo salary increase for balance of school year.

 

As grim as those choices are, the following year also poses some

dilemmas.  If the governor’s proposed education budget is passed as-is, Creswell SD will be short revenue to continue all its current programs with the present staff levels.  For 2009-2010 some school districts in the state are already talking about a shorter school year, layoffs, 4-day weeks, etc.  An additional concern is seeing the governor’s budget pass without any guarantee that it won’t get cut during the next school year.

 

          The R-G reported 29JAN09 that Creswell SD is in line to get $978K over the next biennium from the federal stimulus bill.  This sounds great but we don’t know if the money supplants or supplements the two programs mentioned: special education and poverty assistance for which we already received significant federal funding.  We have plenty of “shovel ready” construction projects on our deferred maintenance list.

 

          All of these considerations/options (and more) will be the contemplation of our Finance Committee and our school community.  We wanted to give a thumbnail sketch of the options.  Hope this helps.  If Mrs. Heiss or I can do any more research let us know.  This will be a discussion topic for the February school board meeting.


RE: Agenda Item 16

 

DRAFT

 

 

Creswell School District

 

Creswell School Board Ad Hoc Finance Committee

 

 

Purpose:

            The purpose of the Finance Committee is to provide a forum for timely and accurate exchange of financial information.

 

Committee Members:

            School Board representatives; Kathy Thompson, Chris Matthiesen, David Eusted

            Budget Committee representatives; Ron Blatch, Lon Robertson

            Teacher representatives: Ken Donner, Bill Martin

            Classified representatives: Sandi Scaife

            Administrator representatives: Jan Ophus, Shirley Burrus, Jacque Robertson, Ellen Adler, Jennifer Heiss

 

Committee Goals:

1.            Acquire an in-depth understanding of school budgets and finances applicable to Creswell School District.

a.    Evaluate revenue sources.

b.    Evaluate the distribution of funds for expenditure

2.            Compare Creswell District financial data with other districts.

a.    Align district resources with best-practices expenditures

b.    Develop a long-range vision for the district

3.            Communicate information to the various stakeholders within the school district.

 

Processing:

1.            The committee will select a chair and a person responsible for preparing reports to the Budget Committee and other members of the public pursuant to Goal 3.  Reports shall be posted on the district web site.

2.            The committee will meet at the pleasure of the chair and self-determine its means and methods for achieving self-sought goals as well as explore other fiscal or budget items as may be referred by the school board or superintendent.

3.            The committee serves as an advisory tool of the school board and any recommendations will be directed as such.  No decisions of the committee shall be considered final unless otherwise directed by the school board. 

4.            Committee meetings will be held in public and shall be advertised as such and published by the superintendent.  The committee is encourage to set aside time for public input at each meeting and to otherwise solicit input by whatever means the committee finds expedient and worthwhile.