It is July, but Wayne County Public Schools has not yet approved an official budget for its new fiscal year. That’s as the district attempts to overcome a nearly $5 million fund balance deficit disclosed last month.
At last week’s meeting, the Wayne County Board of Education approved an interim budget resolution, as explained by Interim Superintendent Dr. James Merrill. The interim budget will allow WCPS to continue operating under the known revenue projections until actual appropriations are announced by the state and county.
The Board of Education also received an update from School Operations Specialists, the firm hired to help the district overcome its financial shortfall. According to the presentation, financial experts were able to significantly reduce the district’s deficit over the past few weeks by aggressively locating and shifting available funds across budgets. As a result, the district now has approximately $1.8 million in the bank moving into the coming year.
It was also explained why the school district went to the state for support with paying teacher supplements in June, rather than asking for a $3 million loan from the county. If Wayne County had extended a loan to the district, then that local assistance would have directly impacted the state’s low wealth formula and inadvertently cause the district to lose state funding in this area moving forward.