Lake Oswego School Board discusses fiscal year spending, bond projects
The Lake Oswego School Board convened over Zoom Tuesday, Oct. 12, for a brief discussion on the 2021 fiscal year budget and proposed designs for some of the district's schools.
Fiscal budget review
Stuart Ketzler, assistant superintendent of business services, delivered a summary of the district's 2020-2021 fiscal year financial report.
Out of the $17.9 million in funding from the state, the district spent $15.8 million. Over a million of that difference is due to the Student Investment Account Grant, a federally funded program, that picked up over a million dollars of the district's expenditures.
"The student investment account grant is accounted for separately from the general fund in what's called a special revenue fund," Ketzler said.
The district budgets the funds depending on "worst case scenario" situations, according to Ketzler. However, because of the pandemic, some staff positions like special education instructors were not needed at full capacity and thus did not need to be funded. Another factor that reduced the expenditures for the districts was student enrollment, specifically on a primary level, was also lower than what the district projected to the state, which had an impact on the budget.
"The elementary schools saw the largest decline in enrollment, with roughly 8%. That did allow us … to not fill certain positions during the outset and during the course of the 2020-2021 fiscal year," Ketzler said.
The school district's food services also did not experience any operating deficit in the 2020-2021 fiscal year. Ketzler's current preliminary results for the 2021-2022 fiscal year show that roughly $80,000 will be carried over from the previous academic year for food services.
"That is a reflection of the cost-cutting measures that we took in that program, beginning with some targeted reductions at the start of the 2021 fiscal year," Ketzler said.
Ketzler will provide a glimpse into what spending will look like for the 2021-2022 academic year during one of the November school board meetings.
School bond updates
Executive Director of Project Management Tony Vandenberg shared "exciting" updates on remaining funds from the 2017 school bond and some master planning for the potential 2021 bond.
He touched on the new updates from the 2017 school bond, that are taking place at Lake Oswego High School such as the greenhouse, which will be an optional outdoor learning space for students and staff. The district is also working on updates to STEM-related technology, and culinary equipment. With the 2021 bond, Vanderberg discussed potential parking spaces that may be added and a coffee bar for students at LOHS. Similar designs will be made to Lakeridge High School.
At Lakeridge Middle School, the district is proposing to build a large multipurpose field.
Lastly, Vandenberg showcased the new design plans for River Grove Elementary School.
"The large masses are broken up by gabled roofs in small areas, making the building much more approachable to our little ones," he said. "We found over the years that designing elements like this into a building really helps both with circulation, identification of spaces, and really kind of (making it) inviting for the students that we're serving."
The new plan will include two educational buildings, improved parent drop-off areas and various types of outdoor spaces for students to learn and play.
The next board meeting is Oct. 25 at 6 p.m.
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