District Budget Approved

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The David Douglas School District Budget Committee unanimously approved a 2023-24 budget on Monday, May 1. The budget now moves on to the District School Board for final adoption following a public hearing scheduled to be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 15.

The approved budget is based on expected statewide school funding of $9.9 billion over the next two years, which for most districts in Oregon, including David Douglas, will not fully cover current costs. With that reality in mind, our District budget is student focused, with an emphasis on preserving classroom teachers, keeping classroom sizes relatively low and ensuring supports for students.

Our 2023-24 general fund budget, which makes up the majority of the District’s operational funds, is $139.7 million, a slight decline from 2022-23.

The entire District budget is about $417.8 million, with the largest piece being the capital projects fund of more than $147 million. Almost all of that is the result of our District voters approving a $140 million construction bond measure last November. The third large piece of the overall budget is the special revenue funds, which is primarily made up of grants and federal funding.

The general fund is what pays for the bulk of day-to-day operations and programming in David Douglas. The District has seen a steady enrollment decline over the past seven years and expects to see another drop in enrollment next school year. With this decline in student enrollment has come a shrinking share of state funding.

With that in mind, the 2023-24 general fund budget is an attempt to preserve currently occupied positions despite falling enrollment and funding. While the budget adds about 4 positions across the budget, it eliminates about 14 positions at the secondary level through attrition.

During and in the immediate aftermath of the pandemic, the state (via the federal government) provided extra funding to boost support for students’ mental and emotional needs, as well as to prevent learning loss. These Elementary and Secondary School Relief Act (ESSER) funds expire next year. We are grateful for an additional year of having these funds available, and we are pleased and proud to say that we intend to use the last of these funds to pay for and preserve some 36 teaching positions across the District.

While we are happy to be able to protect these positions for next year, it unfortunately sets up a potentially significant budget shortfall in 2024-25 when ESSER funds are no longer available. Regardless, the David Douglas School District is committed to always centering our student’s needs.

You can see the approved budget in detail here.