Texas Education

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Humble ISD deals with growth

Posted by Texas Education on August 18, 2008

This particular article deals with the crux of the matter, what I have learned and what prompted me from the beginning to stress to students, teachers, parents, the community and especially those who will go to the polls in November and vote. Our schools are growing like they’ve never grown before, and we have a major web of funding mix, formulas, budgets, whether it be for now, 2008, or years past. Meaning, we (the state) are basing some of the funding on formulas and budgets from decades ago. Trying to bring everything into the 21st century on 20th century budgets. (I may be exaggerating, but you get my point.) Dr. Sconzo points out, again:

District leaders cut several programs and increased class sizes to make up $9 million worth of the deficit. However, the district will still have to go to voters to try to make up the remaining roughly $17 million that’s short.

A 13-cent operating tax increase proposal will likely come before voters in the November election, asking residents to pay for nearly 75 percent of that shortfall.

But some ask why the school is seeking money to balance its books while new schools are opening each year.

Superintendent Guy Sconzo said the funding mix that schools use has much to do with that.

Since the district’s operating budget is paid mainly through the state and new buildings are constructed through the funds taxpayer-approved bond levies, the school must draw from two different pots.

An important point to be made here:

“But Sconzo said one of the biggest challenges has been that Humble, and other districts, are growing faster than the state funding formula can keep pace with. So while the need for new schools continues as the student population rises, the school is left to make up shortfalls created by the growth.”

I only hope everyone gets involved, learns, understands the crisis we are experiencing with our schools and schools districts. Look around, Humble is not out there alone either. This is state wide, and it is all because the legislature has turned it’s back on funding our schools.


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