I'm sure that many of you have been reading the paper lately, and noticing articles about the funding of education in Illinois. I have had many people ask me how the information might impact Tri-Valley CUSD #3. After each board meeting, I generally send an update to our staff to let them know about what took place. As I created this update, I wanted to record a video that updated our staff about school business, but also that outlined how our finances have been impacted by state cuts over the last several years. The video received positive feedback, and I thought I would share the data with those interested in my blog. The data that I am reporting was pulled from the General State Aid and Transportation Aid inquiries from the Illinois State Board of Education starting in 2008-2009. These totals were compared to the total money actually paid in each fiscal year. Though a few late payments were made throughout the years, I did not include them in the totals as they were not reflected within the fiscal year the money should have been received, therefor, not allowing us to adjust staff expenditures accordingly and in a timely fashion. The relevance of this information became very apparent lately as our funding was not only prorated this year, but also cut again at the last moment. In addition, we have been told that we will only receive two of our categorical payments (transportation, special education, etc.) this year instead of the four we are entitled to.
I share this not to create a panic, as we are working hard to be innovative and look forward to working with leaders in Illinois to endorse positive solutions like Illinois Vision 2020 (www.illinoisvision2020.org). I simply share this information in an attempt to be transparent and to help those interested gain a deeper understanding about how our finances have been impacted by the proration and lack of state funding for our schools.
Again, the video is an edited portion of the staff update sent out about our recent April board meeting. The staff was certainly the target audience, but he information is relevant for anyone interested. The link to the Leroy Press article about finance at the board meeting is attached here.