Frequently Asked Questions About the District Budget

Post date: Feb 4, 2010 9:04:55 PM

Other districts have been making all kinds of severe cuts this year. What about Bartlesville?

We began this year with a record-high fund balance of over 14%. The BEA had supported allowing the fund balance to rise to this point because of the known uncertainties in state funding. So while state funding has been cut 5-7.5% this year, we have been able to absorb those losses by allowing our fund balance to fall. We might expect it to be somewhere above 9% by the end of the school year, which is still above the old historical levels of between 7 and 8 percent.

What about cuts for next school year?

We will definitely have to make cuts for 2010-2011. State funding is expected to fall at least another 0.5% below the cuts imposed in 2009-2010. We can expect to make cuts of somewhere between 5 to 10%, or more if the legislature does not allocate sufficient funding by the end of the session in late May. Since well over 80% of our budget is in personnel costs, we will have to reduce staffing.

Who is the most vulnerable to staffing cuts?

The approx. 60 teachers who are new to the district this school year are on temporary contracts. Those will only be renewed for next year as the budget allows and when needed to ensure all teachers are highly qualified for their assigned subjects.

If attrition from resignations, retirements, and nonrenewal of some temporary contracts do not suffice to balance the adopted budget, the Board will need to announce a Reduction in Force. It must be announced once it is determined to be necessary, and no later than June 7, 2010.

How does a Reduction in Force work?

It is the process by which teachers who are on continuing contracts are not renewed. See section 1.6 on pages 11-13 of the negotiated agreement.

How is the district budget determined?

The various sites and departments present their budget priorities to a 12-member district committee, the Superintendent's Budget Advisory Committee, which then examines the projected funding and recommends a budget to the Board of Education for action. The presentations will be made to the Committee in March and April. The Committee will recommend a budget in early June.

How do I have input into budget priorities and share cost-saving ideas?

The best way is to communicate directly with your site principal. You can also contact Granger Meador, the BEA Chief Negotiator. He is a member of the district budget committee, but remember that your ideas are more likely to be adopted if they come up through the site budgeting process.

Who is on the district budget committee?

Dr. Gary Quinn, Superintendent

Mr. Doug Divelbiss, Board of Education

Mr. Sam Springer, Board of Education

Mr. Scott Bilger, Board of Education

Mr. Tim Green, Executive Director of Business and Finance

Mr. Chuck McCauley, Executive Director of Human Resources

Ms. Dianne Martinez, Executive Director of Elementary Instruction

Mr. Sam Herriman, Executive Director of Secondary Instruction

Ms. Beth Cook, Principal of Kane Elementary (PreK-6 principal rep.)

Mr. Jason Langham, Principal of Bartlesville Mid-High (9-12 principal rep.)

Mr. Robert Snellgrove, District HVAC; rep. of the Bartlesville Classified Personnel Organization

Mr. Granger Meador, BHS Physics Teacher; BEA Chief Negotiator