MOUNT VERNON — Ohio Gov. John Kasich has unveiled his proposed budget, and school districts in Ohio, as well as voters in those districts, are examining the bill to see how it will affect their bottom line.
District-specific information is not yet available, but the state will be doing individual district simulations within the next several days to see how the Department of Education funds will be distributed among the state’s 613 public school districts, 49 joint vocational schools, 56 educational service centers and over 300 community schools.
“We really won’t know until July 1 how we are impacted,” said Danville school treasurer Mary Payne. “The budget will next go to the House of Representatives and Senate. Each will most likely formulate their own version of the budget bill, and everyone has to agree. If it becomes a stalemate and no one wants to accept anyone else’s method, then it goes to conference committee where they bargain for it.”
According to an executive budget summary obtained from the Ohio Department of Education, Kasich has proposed an 11.5 percent decrease in funds for school fiscal year 2012, which begins July 1.
For Centerburg Local Schools, that could mean a loss of about $540,000. East Knox would lose $400,000, and Mount Vernon approximately $1.4 million. North Fork is facing a loss of $970,000.
Funding for FY 2013 [to be divided among all the above-named educational institutions] is $9.7 billion, or a 4.9 decrease from FY 2012.
Individual line items are affected by different amounts. Supplies and maintenance funding, for example, is reduced by 8.2 percent in FY 2012. Academic achievement programs will be taking a monetary hit with the proposed budget. Support for school improvement initiatives and science, technology, engineering and mathematics will be eliminated altogether.
Basic aid support for schools will be reduced by 12.2 percent, except funding for nonpublic schools increases by 1.4 percent in FY 2012 and by 1.5 percent in FY 2013. Career-technical education support will increase by 0.9 percent in FY 2012 and there will be no icrease in FY 2013. The reimbursement public schools receive from the state to compensate for the loss of the inventory and utility tax decreases in FY 2012 by 37.2 percent and 82,7 percent, respectively.