By Mike Scott
The Clark County R-1 School District approved its 2012-13 budget at a special meeting on Thursday, June 28. Over the next school year, the district expects to take in $9,145,597 in revenue, while spending $9,110,374.
The district finished the 2011-12 school year with a positive balance of $105,253.
“There is still some special ed money to come in, which usually comes in during June. If it was here, we’d have an ending balance of $251,233,” Superintendent Ritchie Kracht told board members.
“Overall, it was a really good year for us,” Kracht said. “A lot of things went better than we expected.”
The district should face another good year.
Currently, the budget anticipates a positive balance of $35,223 for the year.
The district will see a boost in revenues as the assessed valuation increased to include the Revere district and higher local assessed valuations.
The CCR-1 district will also receive about $900,000 from the Revere school district.
On the expense side, the school is increasing salaries for certified staff and administrators by 3.28 percent, and non certified staff by 3 percent. The district is also separating step one from steps two and three on the pay scale, and increasing the education steps and longevity steps to help the district attract and retain high quality teachers. Those changes will cost the district $118,415.
“It’s a bigger jump than the teachers have gotten for several years,” said Kracht.
Other budget highlights include the planned purchase of two new school busses, $60,000 to continue to improve technology in the schools, and $104,000 for building renovations, which will be done by the Building Trades classes.
Concerns remain over declining enrollment, which has dropped almost 200 students since 1997, despite adding Wyaconda and Revere to the CCR-1 District.
Uncertainty in state funding is a concern as state budget shortfalls could reduce state aid to the district.
“I don’t trust the state, and I don’t trust DESE,” added Kracht.
Kracht also praised the district staff for watching expenses closely throughout the year.
“They didn’t spend just to spend. They only spent money on the things we really needed,” he said.