April 24, 2018
Dear Budget Committee Members and Bend-La Pine Schools’ Community:
I submit herein Bend-La Pine Schools’ Proposed Budget for fiscal year 2018-2019. The proposed budget of $452 million for all funds is the result of the financial goals set by Bend-La Pine Schools’ Board of Directors, staff and community, as well as the work of our internal budget team.
Bend-La Pine Schools is Oregon’s fifth largest school district. Its student population has steadily increased by an average of 300 students a year for more than three decades. We anticipate that this trend will continue and expect to support more than 18,600 students during the 2018-19 school year. We will do everything possible with the resources allocated to support the teaching and learning environments our students and staff deserve.
Bend-La Pine Schools’ strategic plan is built on a simple, but profound promise: Every student in Bend-La Pine Schools is known by name, strengths, and needs and graduates ready for college, career, and citizenship.
To make this promise real for each of our students, Bend-La Pine Schools is redefining the way we resource, support, teach, and take responsibility for our students in order to ensure they have the skills and knowledge they need to not only participate in the global economy, but to lead it. We expect our students to create new businesses and non-profit organizations, to bring new vitality to existing services and enterprises, to invent new products and processes, and to create new opportunities for others around the world.
The Board of Directors, in partnership with district leadership, has provided clear direction and focus towards this promise through the development of the Board’s Ends/Goals Policy and its eight key World Class Outcomes, defining what it means to live out the District’s purpose of Educating Thriving Citizens. Using clear and focused measurements, we have identified the outcomes we strive for at Bend-La Pine Schools, and we continue to align our efforts and resources accordingly.
We have created a defined profile of a Bend-La Pine Schools’ graduate, which allows our vision to come alive for our students, parents, staff, and the greater community we serve. Our vision moves beyond words and sentences painted on school buildings to a tangible set of eight measurable outcomes, established by Bend-La Pine Schools' Board of Directors:
Oregon’s continued under-investment in K-12 education makes for extremely challenging times - yet we remain focused on continued high performance and improvement through the 2017-19 biennium.
In the following pages, you will find my recommendation for a $452 million all-funds investment into our communities’ schools next year. The General Fund Operations Budget totals $179 million and incorporates resources available to the District, including the following:
In addition, the newly established Oregon High School Graduation and College and Career Readiness Fund, created as a result of the passage of Measure 98, continues into the 2018-19 school year. These resources will allow us to continue to support new high school programs, to enhance Career and Technical Education (CTE) offerings, to intensify our focus on dropout prevention and increasing college and career pathways for students in all of our high schools through the 2018-19 school year.
Goals are realized only through action. Aligning our vision to resources, time, and activities is key to delivering on Bend-La Pine Schools' promise. Our strategic priorities of Teaching, Leadership, Innovation, Safety, and Trust shape our road-map of progress and enable us to focus our resources on what matters most.
To accomplish the goals articulated in this plan, we must build upon all that we have learned and gained in recent years and we must elevate our focus on people—starting with our teachers, school staff and school leaders and extending to students, families, and community partners.
While the 2018-19 Proposed Budget maintains current staffing and instructional days, we must keep a clear focus on the future and the stark realization that Oregon’s continued disinvestment in its school-aged youth, coupled with the legislatures pending and compounding PERS crisis, will cause deep wounds to our education system in the years to come if changes are not made. This generation of students depends on our collective efforts and advocacy on their behalf and on behalf of those who will follow.
Together, we can continue to advocate for additional operating resources that will bring more teachers to our schools, more counselors and therapists to our students, and more support to ensure our students and staff have the teaching and learning environments they deserve. Imagine what we could do with adequate funding. Together, we can ensure that Bend-La Pine Schools’ education system continues to be one of the highest performing large districts in the state.
At Bend-La Pine Schools, we will hold ourselves accountable to the goals and the strategies in this plan. Everyone is valued and everyone must play a crucial role.
Teachers, school leaders and staff - we ask you to hold our students to high expectations, to model those standards in your own behavior, and to provide all students the support they need to succeed.
Parents and families - we ask you to partner with us in giving your children the support they need to succeed at school.
Community partners - we ask you to consider committing more of your time and talent to support our schools.
Together, we can make our promise a reality - every student in Bend-La Pine Schools is known by name, strengths and needs, and graduates ready for college, career and citizenship.
In closing, I want to thank the internal budget team and staff for the significant time and effort they put into preparing this Proposed Budget for 2018-2019. This budget proposal meets the requirements of Bend-La Pine Schools’ Board Governance Executive Limitation Policy EL-10, Financial Planning and Administration, and reflects our purpose of Educating Thriving Citizens.
This budget is built with the intent of continuing to promote high levels of student achievement and progression of our students to post-secondary education and beyond. It works within our available resources to do what we believe is best for our students and families. We will continue to work as diligently as possible to find strategies to use available resources in the best manner possible to serve our current and future students. Our commitment to providing a World-Class education for our students will not waiver. I am pleased that our schools and students are succeeding, that our parents and community members are contributing to school success, and that our students are involved in our community. Thank you investing in their success and for your continued support of Bend-La Pine Schools’ students and staff.
Shay Mikalson, Superintendent