SD49 Superintendent clarifies reasons for 1.68M budget surplus

The history of this 2012 surplus will be more closely examined over the coming weeks

Dear Editor,

I would like to take this opportunity to apologize for an error in responding to the question posed by CMNews in their January 11, 2018 article. The question asked why the district has a 1.6 million dollar surplus, and this response is intended to provide a more accurate history.

The school district ended the 2012 fiscal year with a 1.36 million dollar accumulated prior year surplus. The history of the accumulation of this 2012 surplus will be more closely examined over the coming weeks and this information will be made available in addition to the following.

In 2013, 200K was allocated to balance the operating budget, reducing the accumulated amount to 1.16 million. 2014’s actual surplus was 675K bringing the total accumulated to 1.78 million. The 2015 year-end deficit of 100K and 2016 year-end deficit of 200K then reduced the total to 1.47 million. 2017 saw a surplus of 200K and therefore we entered into this fiscal year with a 1.68 million dollar surplus.

The Board of Education’s organization review of 2016 brought forward the recommendation of hiring a full time Secretary Treasurer in contrast to the Superintendent/Secretary Treasurer position with a District Principal and part time, itinerant Director of Business Operations. This shift was in part due to the identified budget process which allocated prior year surplus for programs that did not get fully implemented and were not addressed through the budget amendments normally occurring in February each year. When revenue met the needs, the surplus was not reallocated through an amendment.

Through the new organizational structure and recommendations adopted from the review, it is the Board’s intention to manage the prior year surplus allocation in a transparent budget process. As previously reported, the reconfiguration of NES and the increase in services to students will form part of a multi-year plan to allocate the prior year surplus in line with the Board’s strategic plan.

The Board has reviewed and approved the delivery of grades 5-7 at Nusatsum Elementary for the 2018-2019 school year. The Board will continue to host its public board meetings at 6pm once a month with an interest in hearing from our schools communities. Our next meeting on March 6th, 2018 at the NES Boardroom at 6pm.

In conclusion, we anticipate being prepared for the shift in educational services for the opening of schools in 2018 and appreciate the Board’s support. There is growing excitement from administration around the potential to better reach our educational goals under this model.

Sincerely,

Steve Dishkin

Superintendent