Sunday, June 24, 2012

Department of Finance Projects K-12 Funding Increases with Passage of November Initiative

Projected funding
Click to view full-size image.
Following the Board of Education meeting June 22, Board President John Lee Evans requested that the Superintendent seek further information from the State Department of Finance (DOF) about future K-12 funding projections should the Governor’s November Tax initiative pass. Several DOF charts show how the state is projecting significant funding increases for K-12 funding with the passage of the initiative.

The DOF projections clearly show how K-12 funding will increase significantly through 2015/16. Of greatest importance to San Diego Unified is the projected increase in per ADA funding for 2013/14. The projections show that the average daily attendance (ADA) funding could increase at least $311 per ADA which would yield approximately $30 to $35 million to the district. This new revenue following the approval of the November initiative would make a significant impact on the district’s projected $80 million deficit in 2013/14 and would provide job security for teachers and stability for district schools. In addition, should the Governor shift funding away from deferral buy downs and into actual education program funding, the district could receive as much as an additional $599 per ADA in 2013/14 or an additional $60 million. Unfortunately, the district is not able to show this additional revenue in its budget documents presented to the Board and the public.

Total Per-ADA K-12 Funding
Click to view full-size image
“This new information demonstrates just how critical the November initiative is to our schools,” said Board President Evans. “With this additional funding from the initiative, the district would be in a far better position to ensure job security for our teaching staff and to start restoring school days for our students.”

“These projections were prepared to show how revenue for K-12 programs and deferral buy downs would grow over time under the Governor's budget proposals, assuming the Governor's tax initiative is approved by the voters,” said Department of Finance officials. “This would be the total revenue allocated to K-12, and the amount of the deferral buy down would be a policy decision of the Governor and legislature as part of the annual budget process.”

“This funding projection from the state is a ray of hope for our students, our teachers, our parents and the entire community.” said Evans. “"These projections demonstrate the wisdom of the Tentative Agreement which allows for automatic adjustments for changes in state funding, maximizing our ability to have stable schools, school year restoration and a balanced budget without having to come back to the bargaining table."

According to Evans, the district will be aggressively advocating for the Governor and legislature to reduce the deferral buy downs so as to further increase the useable funding available from the initiative for schools in 2013/14. "We came together to avert disaster next year. We will see significant improvement if voters approve the Governor’s ballot measure," Evans concluded.