As always, it came down to the wire, but this week the Colorado legislature finished its budget work and agreed on a budget plan that gives more money to public education.
District 50 will see an increase in state dollars of around $3.5 million, but it will not be enough to offset projected cuts necessitated by last fall’s failure of a $5.25 million mill levy override. The District’s Fiscal Oversight Committee told the Board of Education last month that cuts will be needed to avoid deficit spending.
Next week the Board of Education will receive a preliminary budget, which will be available to the public on line on May 28. A public hearing has been tentatively scheduled for the June 10 Board of Education Meeting. By law, the District must approve a balanced budget by the end of June.
Below is a recap of the state budget highlights:
The statewide average increase is $369 per student, but the exact dollar figure varies by district because of a number of factors.
- Constitutionally-required increase of $187 per pupil
- $110 million towards the “negative factor”(the amount the state has underfunded education because of the recession)
- $27.5 million for English Language Learning
- $18 million to help with implementation of the READ Act to assist struggling readers
- $17 million for preschool and kindergarten students
- $13 million for charter school facilities funding
- $3 million for a centralized website where the public can learn more about spending.
- $2 million for smaller and rural districts to implement reforms
You can learn more here.