WC school district preps budget
The Webster City Community School District Board of Directors reviewed the timeline for the fiscal year 2014 budget at a board meeting on Monday.
Superintendent Mike Sherwood said he attended a budget session last week where five different budgets were prepared. The Webster City School District, and districts across Iowa, still have no idea what allowable growth will be set at for next year. As such, Sherwood has prepared the five different budgets to account for allowable growth from zero to four percent.
Sherwood said that when a school’s budget is certified, the district can reduce their tax asking but they cannot increase it. At zero percent allowable growth, the district’s asking is the highest.
“At that, we will have to certify the higher tax rate and then, once the state makes its decision, we will reduce that asking. It doesn’t appear the state is going to solve allowable growth prior to publishing,” Sherwood said.
Unless something changes in the next two weeks, Sherwood said the draft of the budget will be presented to the board on March 25. The budget must then be published no less than 10 and no greater than 20 days prior to the public hearing which is scheduled for April 8. The budget will then be sent to an auditor by April 15.
The board also discussed facility updates planned at Sunset Heights and Pleasant View Elementary Schools. Sherwood said that they were challenged to come up with a design for lockers to accommodate slushy boots and snowpants that students would bring to school, but they have. Sketches of the Pleasant View lockers had 38 lockers on the lower level, although more might be squeezed in. The main part of the building will contain 195 lockers. Two plans for Sunset Heights have 332 or 298 new lockers being installed depending on if the district decides to move storage lockers in the building.
Sherwood said that the district is also reviewing safety procedures with representatives from the Fire Department, Police Department and the Department of Criminal Investigations. The school may need to replace some wire glass panes in order to adhere to fire code.
The board also reviewed standing district policy and approved the first reading of several new policies. Old policies reviewed included rules about truancy, absences and late work and vehicles in the parking lot. New policies included access to student records, appropriate internet use, and insurance compliance regulation.