Finance Strand 2008 09


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Finance Strand 2008 09

  1. 1. School Finance Strand: Problems of Practice WSU Superintendent Program 2008-09
  2. 2. PURPOSE <ul><li>PURPOSE: The purpose of this strand is to increase your knowledge, understanding, and decision-making regarding the Washington State system of school finance. To assist you in acquiring the necessary background regarding this important topic, there will be an ongoing dialogue regarding school finance issues and challenges from the perspective of the superintendent throughout the program. </li></ul><ul><li>As a superintendent, regardless of the size of your school district, you will be expected to provide the financial leadership required by the board of directors, the community, and the state legislature, and other regulatory agencies. </li></ul>
  3. 3. TASKS <ul><li>TASKS: This strand will be a continuing focus each of the semesters you are enrolled in the WSU Superintendent Preparation Program. You will be asked to investigate specific topics, interview selected persons, complete related “problems,” and demonstrate your decision-making skills. </li></ul><ul><li>Many of the tasks will parallel events occurring in your school district and will require you to work closely with the business manager, superintendent, and board of directors, as well as representatives of the professional associations, OSPI, and your local legislators. </li></ul>
  4. 4. COLLECTION OF EVIDENCE <ul><li>COLLECTION OF EVIDENCE: Your work for this strand is to be included in your Collection of Evidence. This will result in a document that includes all of the assigned tasks for each of the semesters. </li></ul><ul><li>Specific directions will be provided for each task as well as suggested resources to further your understanding. </li></ul>
  6. 6. TASK AND ASSIGNMENT #1 <ul><li>BACKGROUND: </li></ul><ul><li>  The legal foundation for the state’s public schools is Article IX of the State Constitution: </li></ul><ul><li>  Section 1: “It is the paramount duty of the state to make ample provisions for the education of all children residing within its borders, without distinction or preference on account of race, color, caste, or sex.” </li></ul><ul><li>  Section 2: “The legislature shall provide for a general and uniform system of public schools . . . as may hereafter be established . . .” </li></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>Write a response in the form of a “Letter to the Editor” responding to a group of community business people who are questioning why so much of the state budget goes to support K-12 schools and why communities can not raise as much money as people will support at the local level through levies for their schools? </li></ul><ul><li>Your “letter” should be included in your Collection of Evidence. Be prepared to discuss.   </li></ul><ul><li>( Suggestion: review the Doran I Decision [ Seattle School District No 1, et al. vs. State of Washington 1977 ]; discuss with your superintendent) </li></ul>
  8. 8. TASK AND ASSIGNMENT #2 <ul><li>BACKGROUND:  </li></ul><ul><li>As school districts complete their 2008-09 budgets and plan for the new school year, newspaper headlines and articles in Washington have announced reductions in personnel, reduction or elimination of programs, and increased student fees—while also stating that school district revenues from the state and local levies (in many cases) have increased significantly from the previous year. </li></ul>
  9. 9.   <ul><li>Meet with your superintendent (and business manager) to discuss what assumptions regarding revenues ( state, federal, and local sources, students enrollment, staff mix, fund balance/cash reserve, etc. ) and expenditures ( salaries and benefits, including retirement, programs, fixed costs, etc ) guided the preparation of the 2008-09 budget for your school district. </li></ul><ul><li>Record these assumptions and the reasons for these assumptions in your Collection of Evidence. Be prepared to discuss. </li></ul><ul><li>( Suggestion: review the state 2007-09 general fund budget for K-12 education and the state 2008 supplemental budget for K-12 education, the collective bargaining agreements for certificated and classified personnel, and the 2007-08 general fund budget for your district) </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>TASKS AND ASSIGNMENTS FOR OCTOBER 2008 SEMINAR </li></ul>
  11. 11. TASKS AND ASSIGNMENT #3 <ul><li>BACKGROUND: </li></ul><ul><li>Collective bargaining is probably now completed for all employee groups in your school district. The resources needed to fund these CBA increases each year becomes more difficult to “find” as discretionary monies (federal, state, local, cash reserve funds) decrease (percentage of budget). TRI has become the vehicle for salary increases “off the state salary schedule”, but the funding for such is mostly from the local levy that most districts have “maxed out” (either reached the levy lid or what voters are likely to approve). The challenges keep coming as school leaders struggle to pay for what has been agreed to at the bargaining table in an effort to “maintain labor peace”. </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>Meet with your business manager and/or superintendent and “cost out” the items in the collective bargaining agreements with the employee groups. (If multi-year agreements are in place, project the increased costs for those other years.) </li></ul><ul><li>Some questions to answer for your district: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Cost of each CBA and total cost of CBA’s? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Number of TRI days for teachers and cost for TRI days? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Average teacher salary, not including TRI? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Average teacher salary, including TRI? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Percentage of special levy needed to service CBA with teachers? With other employee groups? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Where is the money going to come from to pay for CBA commitments? </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>Record your findings in your Collection of Evidence. Be prepared to discuss. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>( SUGGESTION : for additional information visit the website of the Employee Relations and Negotiations Network ( and the Financial Services area of the OSPI website) </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. TASKS AND ASSIGNMENT #4 <ul><li>‘ tis the political season! Education has not been on the front burner of the presidential election campaign, but it certainly is at the state and local level. </li></ul><ul><li>Your task is to compare/contrast the educational platforms of the following races: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>President </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Governor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>State Superintendent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Local legislative races </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the possible fiscal impact for school districts, particularly your district depending on who (person and/or party) wins the elections? </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. <ul><li>If a candidate forum for any of these positions is available in your area, please attend and ask candidates about their stand on educational issues, especially funding of education. </li></ul><ul><li>Record your findings in your Collection of Evidence. Be prepared to discuss. </li></ul><ul><li>SUGGESTION: visit candidate websites to learn about educational platforms) </li></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>TASKS AND ASSIGNMENTS </li></ul><ul><li>FOR NOVEMBER 2008 SEMINAR </li></ul>
  17. 17. TASKS AND ASSIGNMENT #5 <ul><li>At the November seminar, Dave Alfred, Executive Director, Employee Relations and Negotiations Network will present an overview of the current status of collective bargaining in Washington State and identify emerging issues that will be facing school districts. </li></ul><ul><li>You are well prepared for this presentation because you have previously “costed out” the collective bargaining agreements for your school district. </li></ul><ul><li>For the November seminar familiarize yourself with the non-money items of your collective bargaining agreements. Also talk with your superintendent about how your district prepares for negotiations, what role he/she plays in the process, what role the school board plays in the process, what is the format for negotiations, and how does the “deal get done”. </li></ul>
  18. 18. TASKS AND ASSIGNMENT #6 <ul><li>The election is over and the results are known—now the work begins. The Legislature will soon be reorganizing, agency budgets (including OSPI) will be put forth, professional associations (WASA, WSSDA, AWSP, WEA, PSE) will be circulating their “legislative agendas” and newly elected legislators will be meeting with constituents, including superintendents and board members to talk about the upcoming session </li></ul><ul><li>Talk with your superintendent and ask to be included in pre-legislative activities. Also inquire about attending the February WASA/WSSDA Legislative Conference in Olympia. </li></ul>
  19. 19. <ul><li>TASKS AND ASSIGNMENTS </li></ul><ul><li>FOR JANUARY 2009 SEMINAR </li></ul>
  20. 20. TASKS AND ASSIGNMENT #7 <ul><li>BACKGROUND: </li></ul><ul><li>Earlier this year you investigated the assumptions for your district’s 2008-09 budget and reviewed revenue and expenditure projections. </li></ul><ul><li>In January of each year OSPI adjusts the apportionment for each school district based on actual data for the first four months of the school year. Depending on the original assumptions, the district’s revenue may “go up” or “go down”—(or be “about right”). </li></ul><ul><li>With this new information your district may have to adjustment the assumptions that were used to develop the budget and revise expenditure limitations for the remainder of the year. </li></ul>
  21. 21. <ul><li>Your assignment is to meet with your superintendent/business manager and review the January apportionment report, the assumptions for the 2008-09 budget, compare estimated and adjusted revenue information, discuss probable expenditure adjustments. and revisions needed to the assumptions. </li></ul><ul><li>Discuss which assumptions were on target, which assumptions were incorrect, and why? </li></ul><ul><li>Reflect in your Collection of Evidence (Finance Strand) on what you have learned from this assignment and how it would influence your work as a superintendent. </li></ul>
  22. 22. TASKS AND ASSIGNMENT #8 <ul><li>BACKGROUND: </li></ul><ul><li>With the state facing a 5.1 billions dollar shortfall it is expected funding for schools will be significantly impacted for 2009-10, and probably 2010-11. With personnel costs approximately 85 percent of most school district budgets, it is expected that very difficult decisions are ahead for superintendents and school boards. </li></ul><ul><li>Discuss with your superintendent how he/she intends to approach probably budget reductions with employees, the unions, and the community. </li></ul><ul><li>Be prepared to discuss. </li></ul>
  23. 23. Suggestions for the Legislative Session . . . <ul><li>Read the E-Clips daily on the WSSDA ( ) website </li></ul><ul><li>Read the WASA and AWSP weekly legislative updates </li></ul><ul><li>Attend opportunities to meet with your legislators from your region </li></ul><ul><li>Attend the WSSDA/WASA Legislative Conference in February </li></ul><ul><li>Let WASA/AWSP know you are available to contact legislators and to testify at legislative hearings </li></ul>