Beginning with the 2013-14 California budget, the state made major changes to the way it allocates funding to school districts with the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF). Thanks to the dedicated stewardship of our Board of Trustees and the mutual respect and collaboration we share with our employee groups, we are we were able to avoid any layoffs and implement our priorities for our students and the educational program. The Board of Trustees has identified priorities in budget development that address class sizes, support our implementation of the Common Core State Standards and new assessment systems coming online, and planning for the long term maintenance and repair of school facilities.
As the District has worked collaboratively with our staff, parents and stake-holder groups, we have placed the priorities squarely on students with improvements and enhancements to the educational program, including:
Lowering class sizes for grades K-3 and maintaining the staffing added to grades 6th-12th to address some of our largest class sizes;
Improving school allocations that will make sure all schools are fully staffed and ready for students on the first day of school;
Closing the achievement gap with English learners, economically disadvantaged students, students with disabilities and foster youth;
Investing in essential programs like International Baccalaureate (IB), specialty arts and music programs, early literacy and math intervention and Transitional Kindergarten.
Our balanced budget puts students first with smaller class sizes, improving technology access with both mobile devices and better infrastructure for connectivity, and supporting visual and performing arts, IB programs, and program designs such as the academies at SVMS that are proven to improve student achievement while providing opportunities for enrichment. Student achievement continues to increase as a result of the hard work of our students, our staff members, our parents and community members.
While budget challenges remain, the fiscal outlook is changing. As we work to implement Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), stakeholders will have more opportunity to give input at school level meetings and District forums along with online surveys.
Thanks to the effective leadership of our dedicated Board of Trustees, the sacrifices of our employee groups, and the incredible work of Save our Schools Scotts Valley, Scotts Valley Education Foundation, the PTAs and Parent Clubs, our multi-year projections are also positive.
Together with our experienced Board of Trustees, all of us at SVUSD remain passionate about preparing our students for a bright future – college and career ready -- and are keeping learning as our highest priority.
EdSource is a provider of non-partisan information on school funding: www.edsource.org
Further nonpartisan fiscal information on current funding for public education is available through the Legislative Analysts’ Office: www.lao.ca.gov