The Rockwood School District approved its 1012-13 budget last week, as outlined in this dispatch from the district communications office:
The Rockwood Board of Education approved an operating budget of $208 million for the 2012-2013 school year at the June 21 meeting. This is an increase of $3 million from the FY12 budget ($205 million), with the majority of the operating budget focused on salaries and benefits.
According to Superintendent Bruce Borchers, Ph.D., Rockwood implemented zero-based budgeting for FY13. “All Rockwood schools and departments were asked to build their budgets from zero - based upon the needs of the building. This new approach helped our school district realize significant cost savings,” said Borchers.
The approved operating budget includes the following:
Revenue: Rockwood’s revenue in the FY13 budget is $201.6 million, a decrease of $3 million from the FY12 budget of $204.6 million. Major revenue sources are local property taxes, state foundation formula funding, voluntary transfer student (desegregation) aid and sales tax.
Fund Balances: The district’s fund balances as of June 30, 2012, are at $44.6 million, which represent 21.8 percent of the FY12 budgeted operating expenses. Within a fiscal year, fund balances fluctuate because of the seasonal time periods in which operating revenues are received – versus the monthly time period in which they are expended.
Use of Fund Balance: The Board of Education policy for operating fund balance is to have 18 percent of expenditures on hand at the end of each year. With the positive change from FY12, Rockwood will have nearly $8 million from current fund balances to offset the deficit spending in the operating budget in FY13 and beyond.
“The uncertainty of education-related state funding and these tough economic times are especially challenging for public schools,” notes Shirley Broz, chief financial officer. “However, this FY13 budget continues to guide Rockwood in a fiscally sound and responsible direction.”
Rockwood has a history of strong financial management that has been independently recognized by numerous organizations, including the Association of School Business Officials International and the Government Finance Officers Association. The district’s conservative financial management has been recognized with a Moody's bond rating of AA2 and a Standard and Poor’s rating of AAA, making Rockwood one of only 68 school districts nationwide to hold such a high, outstanding rating.