FY 2018 Budget

20170317 FY 2018 Preliminary Budget Page 001Des Moines Public Schools administrators and the School Board are at work on developing the FY 2017-18 budget, which goes into affect on July 1. On this page you may read a copy of the proposed budget, view presentations made at previous budget-related  meetings, see key dates in the budget process, and access other budget information.

FY 2017-18 Preliminary Budget

The FY 2017-18 preliminary budget is now available online. The preliminary budget proposes maximum expenditures of $555 million.

As Superintendent Ahart notes in his cover letter to the FY 2017-18 preliminary budget: “We are living in uncertain times, and for many of us, what feels like unsafe and threatening times. There is uncertainty at the federal level with a new Secretary of Education and the extended period of rule-making for the Every Student Succeeds Act. At the state level, we have the House, Senate, and Governor’s office all held by the same party for the first time in a long time. School districts in Iowa are required by law to certify budgets by April 15 of each calendar year; yet, for several years, the Legislature did not establish Supplemental State Aid (Allowable Growth) and State Foundation Aid in a timely manner, at times weeks or months after the deadline for certifying the budget. The good news is that the district will not spend the next several months trying to figure out what Supplemental State Aid (i.e., Allowable Growth) is going to be for FY 2018, requiring the development of multiple budget scenarios. The bad news is we know what it is, and it is woefully inadequate. While the Governor proposed a modest 2% growth, the Legislature approved growth at 1.10%.”

The historically low funding set for public education creates significant long-term challenges Des Moines Public Schools and public education in all of Iowa.

Budget Parameters

The School Board adopted the following as parameters in establishing the school district’s budget:

  • Meet and stay within Board Management Limitations.
  • Maintain financial heath; provide a balanced budget.
  • Keep District Student Expectations and Board Beliefs at the forefront.
  • Review status of all levies; make strategic adjustments as needed.
  • Continue to seek operational efficiencies and improve operational effectiveness.
  • Continue to focus on drop-out prevention and graduation rate improvement strategies.
  • Focus on strategies to close the achievement gap, with added emphasis on males of color.
  • Improve English Language Learners (ELL) programming.
  • Place emphasis on supports for literacy programs and 8th grade Algebra.
  • Continue to assess needs and evaluate programming to:
    1. Create innovative programs to meet unmet needs.
    2. Maintain or grow programs that are demonstrating success.
    3. Strategically abandon programs that do not demonstrate value.
    4. Assess and address curriculum needs and program delivery as needed to stay ahead of advances in technology and digital content.
  • Improve Parent and Student Engagement

Presentations and Documents

The following are presentations made by the school district’s Chief Financial Officer  at various points during the budget process:

Key Dates

The following are budget-related meetings, both past and upcoming. Please note that dates are subject to change.

Friday, April 14, 2017
Statutory deadline to submit FY 2017-18 budget

Tuesday, April 4, 2017 – 6:00 PM
School Board Meeting – Certification and Adoption of Budget
Central Campus – Multi-Purpose Room

Saturday, April 1, 2017 – 9:00 AM
Public Budget Forum
Lincoln High School – Auditorium

Thursday, March 30, 2017 – 6:30 PM
Public Budget Forum
Roosevelt High School – Library

Wednesday, March 29, 2017 – 6:30 PM
Public Budget Forum
East High School – Auditorium

Tuesday, March 28, 2017 – 6:30 PM
Public Budget Forum
North High School – Library