School district cites audit as a sign of growing financial stability
The Newberg School District is lauding the results of a financial audit conducted by a third party. The audit, according to a district press release, shows a "validation of healthy and sound financial practices."
Wilcox Arredondo & Co. – an accounting firm from Canby – conducted the audit and spent two weeks reviewing documents and conducting interviews to get a clearer picture of the district's financial situation. The fund balance for the district at the end of the 2017-2018 school year was $2,457,008 – nearly 5 percent of its budget.
The audit stated that the district's practices were "in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America." According to Interim Superintendent Joe Morelock, the audit shows the district is making significant progress toward long-term financial stability despite a lack of funding.
"We continue to pay careful attention to revenue and expenses to be fiscally responsible," district finance director Nikki Fowler said in the release. "About $300,000 of that ending fund balance will go back to the state in our year-end adjustment for the school support fund (SSF), so we will set that aside and continue to watch for details on the PERS increase and other costs we know are coming."
Taking the $300,000 away from the original balance, the district claims a 4.3 percent effective ending fund balance. While that number is a plus as far as the budget is concerned, it is well below the goal set by the board of 7 percent.
According to Board Chairman Bob Woodruff, the financial uncertainty of the district in 2016-2017 was "hard on our community."
"I'm really glad to see that the sacrifices of our staff and all of us being frugal with spending is showing results," Woodruff said in the release. "It encourages me to keep working toward financial stability and that (7 percent) goal."
The release says that surrounding districts are ahead of Newberg in terms of money set aside at the end of each year, which gives them an edge in counteracting a lack of funding by the state for education. According to Morelock, additional funding for schools is crucial to the stability of Newberg and surrounding school districts.
"We really need to focus on two things to get us to long-term financial stability," Morelock explained, "building that contingency locally and advocating in Salem for the Legislature to bring our students the funding they need and deserve."
The Newberg Education Association recently brought a draft resolution to the school board advocating for more education funding. The board unanimously approved the resolution.
The school district's financial reports are available on www.newberg.k12.or.us/district/financial-reports.
Students from Newberg and Dundee were named recently to dean's lists at various universities in the Northwest for their academic performance last fall.
The following is an updated account of those who recently reached that milestone:
Central Oregon Community College (3.6+ GPA): Emma Babcock, Newberg.
Eastern Oregon University (3.5+ GPA): Benjamin Corum, Newberg, Dana Gonzalez, Newberg, Alexander Warnock, Newberg.
Gonzaga University (dean's list -- 3.5 to 3.84 GPA): Jacqueline and Jesica Baca, Newberg.
Gonzaga University (President's List, 3.85 to 4.0 GPA): Lydia Chambers, Dundee.
Pacific University (3.7+ GPA): Hayley Hensley, Dundee, Katie Husvar, Dundee, Jasper Riogeist, Newberg.
Fundraiser for NHS Grad Night party set
Support Newberg High School grad night with a fundraiser at St. Peter's Catholic Church. The church will serve breakfast food from 8 a.m. to noon Sunday, with proceeds going to the school's drug- and alcohol-free party following graduation in June. Cost of attendance at the fundraiser is $6.