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Five Questions to Ask: K-12 Finance & Operations

  1. With personnel costs claiming the lion’s share of district budgets, is your district considering innovative models of staffing to save money in this area?Or are cuts and layoffs the only steps taken or considered?
  2. How is your district directing facilities funding to particular schools, and how has funding changed over the past decade?
  3. Are there incentives built into your state’s or district’s pension or retirement system that encourage teachers to retire at certain times?How are districts preparing for the retirement of baby boomer teachers?

    Are teachers allowed to return after they retire and teach, and collect both a regular and retirement check?

  4. How have class sizes been affected by budget decisions, especially during the economic downturn? And are the results of any class size changes the same across all schools, or are some schools, grades or subjects hit harder?
  5. Now that most of the economic-stimulus funding has been spent by districts and states, is there anything to show for the money in terms of improvements to programs or student achievement? And how are districts and states dealing with this so-called “funding cliff”?