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Navigating School Budgets for the Rest of the Year

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March 1, 2017

Over the past two years, we have had to face many difficult issues when it comes to finance. The 2/23/17 state school board meeting gave us even more news that is not pleasant. Our biggest issue right now is trying to navigate financial issues through the rest of the year. Here are a few things we know beyond doubt:

  1. The allocation was lowered $42.00 a WADM.
  2. The likelihood that you need to be prepared for more drops in State Aid payments for the rest of the year is a certainty.
  3. It would be a good idea to remove .8% from your projected State Aid for the rest of the year in addition to the reduction in the State Aid Factor. 
  4. Remember that if the 1017 Fund does not collect for a month, your State Aid must be lowered. 
  5. The following percentages are what the SDE will be using to figure your State Aid for the rest of the year

                                                        i.    February is 63%, the month of February is 9%

                                                       ii.    March is 72%, the month of March is 9%

                                                      iii.    April is 81%, the month of April is 9%

                                                      iv.    May is 91%, the month of May is 10%

                                                       v.    June is 100%, the month of June is 8%

We are building a sheet to accommodate these changes. We don’t know for sure that the Education Technology Fund will collect all the way, but current collections show a likelihood of not making full collections if the current trends persist.

In this financial environment, being deliberate and contemplating the district’s obligations carefully is central to being successful. We are used to offering employment contracts on a certain schedule and to signing contracts to continue services for the following year, but this may be the year to extend those windows to the legal limit to insure knowledge of FY 18’s revenues. This is the time to evaluate services and staffing, evaluate the district expenditures for efficiencies and, most importantly, monitor district revenue. If a RIF is necessary, the procedures for activating the RIF need to begin now. Being a deliberate planner is essential due to the likelihood of a diminished revenue stream for the next fiscal year. It is always best to plan for the worst, but let it play out and do not panic. 

If we can be of service to your district, please don’t hesitate to contact our office or me directly by email or phone (405.368.9048).  

About the Author

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Andy Evans

Director, Finance

Andy serves as the Director of Finance for the OPSRC.  In this role, he provides help in financial and business-related areas for schools. This includes budgets, managing cash flow, Estimate of Needs, federal programs and general service to aid in the effective use of district resources. Additionally, Andy serves as a resource in customizing budget spreadsheets, projection sheets, and other financial tools essential to administrators in maintaining their district’s financial health.

Andy is a graduate of Southwestern Oklahoma State University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Natural Sciences and a Master’s in Education Administration. Andy has served as superintendent at Mountain View-Gotebo and the Prague school districts.

Want to learn some fun facts about Andy? Click here!

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