School Funding Update – How 1.1% Could Impact Waukee Schools
As reported at the December 2016 Revenue Estimating Conference, revenues for the state of Iowa are growing at 4.2%. This week, media reports would indicate public schools will potentially receive 1.1% supplemental state aid for the 2017-18 school year. How will that impact the students in the Waukee schools?
Last year the district cut approximately $1.2 million from the budget. Those cuts resulted in a decrease in the number of teacher librarians, Extended Learning Program (ELP) teachers, counseling/at risk positions, elimination of technology teachers at the middle schools, a cut in associate hours, changing the 8 period day to a 7 period day in grades 8-9, reduction in operations budget, larger class sizes across the district, and elective programs were not expanded.
If the legislature appropriates 1.1% in new money the result for Waukee is approximately $732,000 additional dollars for next year. With increased operating costs, rapid growth, and a year delay in funding for 579 additional students (which totals just shy of $3.8 million) the positions will not be reinstated as the district will simply not have the funds. In addition, class sizes will continue to grow and elective and advanced placement courses will not be added.
We will continue to operate the district n a manner that is fiscally responsible and plan carefully for the future. However, 1.1% supplemental state aid is going to make it a challenge.