Wednesday, April 30, 2008

balance the OSD budget for yourself!

The Olympia School District recently publicized a list of potential cuts (with a few additions) for the next fiscal year, and it's set off a firestorm of controversy, mostly because folks aren't sure what's really on the chopping block. The Board wants direction from you, concerned citizen. Here's where I can help.

Using the initial document [pdf] offered by the Olympia School District, I've created a spreadsheet where you can try to save dollars and programs in your own attempt to balance the Olympia School District budget for 2008-2009 by cutting roughly $2.5 million.

Want to keep the Drill Team intact? Better delete it from the "potential savings" column. But what will you cut instead?

More options will be added as they become available. This morning, District and school reps met to discuss other potential cuts and additions, so I'm sure I'll have to update this soon.

If you have questions about the spreadsheet, email me; my contact info is at right. If you have questions or concerns about the budget, email Peter Rex. Better yet, show up at one of the two community forums: Tuesday, May 6th, at the Knox Building, 6:30 p.m., or Wednesday, May 7th, Marshall Middle School, same time.

Before you go, download the spreadsheet and give it a whirl. Maybe you can find a clear path to politically tenable savings.

Update: I should add that the spreadsheet is interactive: it balances the numbers as you save or cut programs. If you don't have Microsoft Excel, offers its own online editing program, so you can still crunch the numbers.

Read this doc on Scribd: Web-Ready Budget Worksheet

Mandatory disclaimers: this work is my own, using public information supplied by the Olympia School District. It is not endorsed by the District, and is for educational purposes only. Values are subject to change; check the District website for the most current information.


Anonymous said...

What about CUTS at the district level?

Firing McCaully?
Does a district our size really need TWO Asst. Sups? And one Ineffective leader/Sup?
Canning Nav 101?
Stopping new curriculum adoptions?
Closing ORLA?
Stop busing 5 kids from Boston Harbor for PATS!
Why do we pay for FIVE staff member to oversee a state program (Skyward)????

Where are the cuts at the district level in the administration?? It's ridiculuous. The secretaries down there are doing the work - those guys don't even answer their own phones or voicemails.

Mike said...


I appreciate what you have done. However, you are limited by using the options given to us by the District. With a little research I was able to add 6 more items to the list and found two more tonight.

Should the District spend %150,000 on travel, 312,000 on the board of directors budget, etc. I added up 500,000 in cuts that were not on the list. If the District would put the budget on the website with a brief explanation then individuals could do this. Given the limited options the District proprosed it is tough to do. However, once again I appreciate what you are trying to do as it is something the District should have done. (i.e. priority sheet with all the options and space to write in your own--individuals could rank them)

Jim Anderson said...

Mike, if you scroll down to the bottom of the spreadsheet, you'll see I added your suggested cuts. (Didn't ask permission; didn't think you'd mind. I did give you attribution.) Thanks for sharing your research!