2015-2016 Budget Plan
When we spend our money, we look for value. When we invest, we look for the best return on investment.
Residents in our community can find that good value in the Raymore-Peculiar School District, where average per-pupil spending is lower than the state average and neighboring districts, and student achievement is higher.
Ray-Pec operating expenditures per student were $8,385 in 2014. The statewide average was $10,005. With a tax levy rate that has not increased for more than 12 years, the District continues to make gains in student achievement and graduation rates, and also has an ACT composite score well above the state average. The total property tax levy of $5.0397 is expected to remain unchanged this year.
The Ray-Pec Board of Education on June 25 approved a budget for 2015-2016 that supports the implementation of the prestigious International Baccalaureate program, expands the availability of technology devices for students, includes more than $1 million in capital improvement projects, and provides salary and benefit enhancements for employees.
Superintendent Dr. Kari Monsees praised the budget plan, saying that it “reflects the priorities of the District’s Strategic Plan.” In reviewing the District’s success in student achievement, he added that “It indicates how well we use the resources the community provides.”
The District anticipates total revenue of $64,697,394 and total expenditures of $65,142,090. This comprises all District funds, including the general fund, teachers fund, the capital projects fund, and the debt service fund. A fund is a self-balancing set of accounts that is categorized for a specific purpose.
Total balances in all funds are budgeted to decline by $444,696, as the District makes targeted investments in key areas while maintaining fund balances at the strategic plan goal of 23 percent, plus or minus 3 percent.
The District anticipates ending 2015-2016 with $14.4 million in operating reserves, which represents approximately three months of operating expenditures.
Student Success remains the top priority of the District. In this area, the budget includes staffing plans to maintain current class sizes and to add resources in certain intervention areas. The budget also funds the purchase of resources to support the recently updated ELA curriculum.
Safety improvements for the coming year include the addition of a second School Resource Officer and additional staff training on responses to safety threats. The District also plans the use of a new crisis plan mobile application tool.
The District implemented a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) pilot project in 2013-2014, which was expanded to more than 100 classrooms this past year. For 2015-2016, grades three through five will be supported with one-to-one devices for students, with BYOD classrooms added at several other grade levels. In addition, the District provides supplemental devices in BYOD classrooms for students without a device of their own.
The 2015-2016 budget includes more than $1 million for capital improvement projects. The list of projects includes:
- Asphalt and concrete improvements at Timber Creek Elementary, Ray-Pec High School south building, and various locations District-wide.
- Video surveillance upgrades.
- Heating, ventilation and air conditioning improvements in the Shull gym.
- Roof repairs and/or replacements at Shull Elementary.
- Replacement of the aging lighting control board in the auditorium at the south high school.
- Equipment upgrades for the Buildings and Ground Department and in District kitchens.
The new school year officially begins July 1. Chief Financial Officer Kendra Hutsell provided an overview of the budget at the Board’s June 25 meeting. Board members were complimentary of the budget and of the preparation work completed by Hutsell and her staff.
You may review Hutsell’s presentation: http://www.raypec.k12.mo.us/
Review a fact sheet: Financial Facts