The Norman Transcript


June 4, 2013

Budget projections presented to school board

NORMAN — The ripple effects of stagnant revenue and tough legislation were reflected in past and projected Norman Public Schools’ budgets, presented Monday evening to the Board of Education.

NPS Chief Financial Officer Brenda Burkett emphasized that her projections and calculations are always “worst-case scenarios” and detailed factors helping and hurting the district’s annual budgets, such as revenue, state legislation and federal funding.

“I said this many times. The reason our district ended last year with such a healthy fund balance wasn’t because of state funding. It was the federal dollars we were receiving,” Burkett said. “Using bond money creatively was also hugely helpful, such as purchasing text books and instructional technology with bond dollars — which is legal. Had they still been out of general fund, we never would have ended with the balance we did.”

Projected revenue for 2012-2013 was $92.6 million. Projected expenditures were $96.6 million, showing a disparity of almost $4 million. The federal dollars, which Burkett said were awarded in 2011, were carried over into Fiscal Year 2012, meaning the district will not have this resource for 2013-2014.

A key reason for the excess of expenditure budget over revenue was the district’s decision to increase teachers’ compensation, making up for lags in previous years due to more dire budget situations.

“Our school employees and staff received minimal compensation increases over the years. With such a strong fund balance and utilizing every resource, we were able to enrich compensation schedules, unlike preceding years,” Burkett said.

Superintendent Joe Siano voiced his appreciation of this measure and the board’s prioritization of NPS faculty and staff.

“The board has always said that when dollars were available for compensation, that would be a priority,” Siano said. “We feel like we have a staff that is some of the best in the state.

“The safer rate would be to hang onto our healthy fund balance, but our employees waited and the budget was healthy enough to make that commitment, and we need to be fair when we say we can.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • honor_roll.jpg Local students make the grade

    Norman Public Schools has released the most recent honor rolls. Click a school to see if you know a student who made the grade.

    View honor rolls for Norman High School | Norman North High School
    Alcott Middle School | Irving Middle School | Longfellow Middle School | Whittier Middle School

    June 10, 2013 1 Photo

  • Norman High student argues his way to the top

    Knowing the ins and outs of an argument that involves complex research is the type of skill one expects a high paid attorney to have not a high school student. Yet debate competitor Nicky Halterman has been arguing his way to the top of ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Grad to serve as delegate at camp

    William Long, 2014 Norman North High School graduate, recently represented Oklahoma as a delegate at the 2014 National Youth Science Camp. Long joined 100 other top high school graduates representing the United States and eight other ...

    July 25, 2014

  • More than 700 to receive clothing, school supplies

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Citizens Caring for Children will host a two-day Back-to-School shopping event for school-aged children in foster care living in Oklahoma, Canadian, Cleveland, Grady, Lincoln, Logan and Pottawatomie counties....

    July 24, 2014

  • Program to fund classroom projects

    U.S. Cellular is donating $1 million to fund teacher classroom projects across the nation, including Oklahoma, through its “Calling All Teachers” program. Last year, the company contributed $500,000 toward educational materials for ...

    July 23, 2014

  • New AP program to begin in Norman

    NORMAN — Norman Public Schools Board of Education learned about Advanced Placement Capstone at a regular board meeting Monday....

    July 22, 2014

  • Noble teacher is state finalist

    Local teacher Roger Clement has been named one of 12 finalists for the 2015 Oklahoma Teacher of the Year award by the Oklahoma State Department of Education. Clement teaches physical science, biology, chemistry and chemistry II at Noble ...

    July 17, 2014

  • MNTC board to consider purchases

    The Moore Norman Technology Center Board of Education will conduct a regular board meeting at 5:30 p.m. today on the Norman campus, 4701 12th Ave. NW, conference room A-200....

    July 17, 2014

  • Principals named for Norman North, Madison Elementary

    The Norman Board of Education announced tonight that it is hiring Dr. Peter Liesenfeld as principal of Norman North High School and Annette Williams as principal of Madison Elementary....

    July 16, 2014

  • Three more local students named National Merit Scholarship winners

    On Monday, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) announced approximately 1,600 additional winners of National Merit Scholarships financed by colleges and universities. Three area students were named National Merit Scholarship ...

    July 15, 2014