The Coffee County Schools Board of Education held two budget hearings on Sept. 2 – one at noon and one at 5:30 p.m. – before passing the proposed budget for fiscal year 2022 at the board’s second meeting of the evening.
Coffee County Schools Chief School Financial Officer Shannon Odom presented the proposed budget to the board at both budget hearings. The estimated beginning balance for FY 2022 – beginning Oct. 1, 2021 and ending Sept. 30, 2022 – is $9,513,520.80 with expected total revenues of $36,868,334.22.
The estimated cost of expenditures for FY 2022 is $35,586,727.54 with an estimated ending balance of $10,795,127.48.
Of that, $10,047,687 will go to the general fund, $583,055.95 will go to special revenue and $164,384.53 will go to the fiduciary. The Alabama State Department of Education suggests all school systems keep at least two months operating balance in the general fund. Coffee County Schools will have the equivalent of six months of operating balance.
The majority of Coffee County Schools’ funding comes from state revenue with total revenue for FY 2022 being $17,367,791, which is $794,908 more than FY 2021. That funding is primarily based on average daily membership (ADM) at the school, which means the average enrollment for the school year. The reason for the increase is that Coffee County Schools saw an increase of 56.55 students in FY 2020, which is what the state’s budget is based on. The AMD for the 2021-2022 school year is more than three times that number, which will be reflected on the budget for FY 2023.
Coffee County Schools will receive $2,038,137 in federal funding – an increase of $243,467,000 from the previous year – with an additional $31,663 from ARPA and $1,514,800 for the Child Nutrition Program.
Additionally, Coffee County Schools has received a total of $2,792,785 from ESSER II – which is a part of the CARES Act funding for COVID-19 – with a remaining balance of $1.9 million of that money left. That money will be used for instructional coaches, interventionists, additional teachers, instructional materials, professional development, the summer school program, an after school program, technology and facility improvements. Also, the state’s ESSER II allocation to Coffee County Schools is $111,781.
Coffee County Schools’ total allocation from ESSER III – a part of the American Rescue Plan (ARP) – is $5,021,380 with the majority of the spending going to the same expenses as ESSER II but also including the cost of nursing supplies.
The school system will also receive $1,255,345 for learning loss reserves that will go to a summer learning and summer enrichment program, the extended day program and personnel. The state is also allocating $518,425 from ESSER III with that going to the summer learning program, after school program and personnel.
The school system’s total local fund revenue – which comes from county taxes, county and district ad valorem, lunch room sales, earning and investments and other revenue – makes up $4,740,224.51. Coffee County Schools also will receive $1,434,083.18 from “other revenues,” which includes revenue from things like E-rate, CNP rebates and trip-per-mile reimbursements.
Of Coffee County Schools’ expenditures for FY 2022, 69 percent of the budget goes towards instructional services and instructional support. That includes teachers and staff salaries and employer paid benefits along with materials like text books.
Auxiliary services – like transportation and CNP expenses – make up 10 percent of the budget, general administration makes up six percent of the budget, capital outlay makes up 3 percent of the budget and debt service makes up 3 percent of the budget. The final 3 percent of the budget is made up of other expenditures like preschool services and transfers out of the general fund.
The board unanimously passed the budget at the meeting. The board also approved the following personnel matters.
Chelbie Mobley, TEAMS teacher, Zion Chapel School;
Chelbie Mobley, teacher, Zion Chapel School;
Celeste Jones, teacher, New Brockton Elementary;
Greg Lee, custodian, New Brockton Elementary;
Larry Green, bus driver, Coffee County Schools;
Emily Roberts, Coffee County Schools; and
Cindy Donn, bus driver, Coffee County Schools.