School Board adopts resolution to reduce staffing to balance budget

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Shoreline School Board, Superintendents, Finance

Statement from the Shoreline School District

At the Shoreline School Board meeting earlier this week, one of the items on the agenda was the adoption of Resolution 2022-3, Non-Supervisory and Supervisory Certificated Employee Reduction Authorization for the 2022-2023 School Year, as recommended by the Superintendent. 

While the state provided some level of one-time funding in the form of enrollment stabilization, which was approved by the legislature this spring, it will not be enough to balance the 2022-23 budget.

Additionally, we are forecasting lower enrollment over the next four years. With lower enrollment comes reduced funding from the state and a reduction in the amount of levy funds that the district will be able to collect. Thus, the projected revenues will not be sufficient to balance the budget and maintain our current educational program and staffing for the coming year.

The Shoreline School Board adopted Resolution 2022-3. However, the adoption of the resolution included direction from the Board for the following:

  • Establish the general fund balance target at 4%, which is within board policy (4% to 5%), and will allow for fewer FTE reductions
  • In an effort to possibly increase enrollment, accept boundary exceptions (process and timing to be determined)
  • Begin a process to engage stakeholders in a review and exploration of “right-sizing” our district budget and school district system in light of the future enrollment forecast
  • Provide a mechanism for community feedback that incorporates those most affected

Shoreline Schools has an incredible team of staff across the district, and their thoughtful, caring, and intentional work of supporting students and providing the best learning experiences is critical for their success. 

Because of this, staffing reductions are always a last resort in addressing fiscal challenges. However, with 87 percent of the school district’s budget allocated to salaries and benefits, there is no easy way to prepare for the level of reduced revenue the district is likely facing without addressing staffing levels. 

And while approval of the RIF (Reduction In Force) resolution was needed to begin tackling this challenge, district leadership will continue to work to address budget issues with the least amount of impact on students, staff, and families.

Adoption of the RIF resolution does not necessarily mean that the total number of FTEs (Full Time Employees) authorized will be eliminated or reduced. 

State law requires certificated staff to be notified by May 15 each year if a certificated employee’s contract might not be renewed or might be reduced for the upcoming school year. 

Certificated staffing is not the only place where cuts and efficiencies are being considered (non-employee-related costs and classified staffing will need to be reduced as well); however, certificated staff are the only staff members who must be notified by May 15 if their contract is being affected by cuts. 

District leadership will continue to monitor enrollment and projected revenue, as well as vacancies created by employee leaves, resignations, and retirements, with the goal of minimizing actual position reductions to the extent possible.


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