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Friday, February 11, 2011

Budget impact from proposed Texas education funding cuts

Mansfield ISD Superintendent, Dr. Bob Morrison, discusses the financial state of the district as he details the impending Texas state education funding cuts and the possible effects on the District.

Superintendent Budget Letter for the District Community 
(Get a printable PDF version.)

Dear MISD Family:

The reports about Texas’ budget concerns are getting a lot of publicity, and you are probably reading about many school districts who are having serious financial difficulties. Mansfield ISD is in sound financial condition, and the purpose of this letter is to inform you of our plans to deal with the state’s budget difficulty and its impact on our district.

Mansfield is taking a wait and see what happens approach to the state’s budget. It is very early in the state’s budget process, and we know from experience that the first budget drafts will change dramatically as the legislative session continues. We do not want to respond to rumors. Early projections have Mansfield ISD’s 2011-2012 budget being cut between $10-$30 million. Obviously, a $30 million funding decrease would be very difficult to absorb without deep cuts. A $10 million funding decrease would be difficult as well, but the District would be able to absorb the loss with some operating and program adjustments. Our strong fund balance will allow us to wait until we have facts before we respond.  The actual amount of the decrease will determine exactly how we respond.

Our Board and executive council are committed to providing quality instruction for our students and a good working environment for our employees. A recent staffing audit of the District revealed that Mansfield ISD is staffed very conservatively. According to the report, we have 512 fewer administrators, teachers, and support personnel than comparable districts of our size. Because we are already so lean, we do not feel we will have to make any personnel cuts for the 2011-2012 school year. However, depending on the budget reductions, we may not replace the positions of some who retire or voluntarily leave our district. Until we have the facts, I cannot make predictions or guarantees for the 2012-2013 and beyond school years.

We recognize that the state of Texas is in a tough financial situation, and Mansfield ISD is willing to do our part to help our state during this budget crisis. We are committed to operating on a balanced budget and will remain conservative with our staffing. Tighter budgets in the coming years are a reality. However, if you share our concerns with the impending decrease in state funding to public education in Mansfield ISD, I encourage you to contact your legislators. Tell your elected officials that a balanced state budget should not sacrifice the quality of education.

Thank you,

Dr. Bob Morrison
Superintendent, Mansfield ISD

Contact your state representative. Find who represents you.


Matthew said...

Thank you for the update. This will have a positive impact on teacher confidence and morale.

Lisa Lanham said...

I am impressed and pleased to see the video presentation!It explains the total funding crisis state wide. I would like to recommend CONGRESS.ORG to email your rep's in Austin and Washington. Just put in your zip code and it gives you direct access to them. I am interviewing for a position in your District on Monday and this blog and your presentation sealed the deal for me.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Morrison actually visited each campus to address the teachers about the upcoming budget issues. He had told us that the rumors would be starting and not to worry. It has helped as other districts have started to announce lay offs. He was very up front and honest about what would occur. It was greatly appreciated by the faculty and staff. It does make the job of teaching a lot easier when you don't have to worry about losing your job.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for letting us know about the financial soundness of our district. As a parent and teacher in the district, it is nice to know! I want to encourage everyone to write thier representatives!

Anonymous said...

Great to hear that MISD has been smart with our funds. Cheers to the administration for planning and dealing with the upcoming financial issues. I will continue to brag on Mansfield ISD!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the update. I will like to give a special Thanks to Dr. Morrison and our Administration Team for being on top of our financial issues you guys ROCK!! I will continue to Pray for Dr. Morrison and the whole MISD staff that God will continue to give you Wisdom, Knowledge, and Understanding in all you do. I read in a Leadership book that a true leader must have a strong drive to take the initiative to act-a kind of initial stirring that causes people and an organization to use their best abilities to accomplish a desire end..Thanks Dr. Morrison and our Teachers for the DRIVE in you. Come on Mansfield! Let or representatives know WE WILL FIGHT FOR EDUCATION!!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your efforts in providing a positive impact on our teachers and I commend the MISD administration during this tough financial situation. MISD is AWESOME!