York County School Board Newsletter

YCSD School Board Notes - February 3, 2014 Work Session

I am writing to share information with you regarding our most recent School Board work session, held tonight, Monday, February 3.

In order to sustain and build on the excellence of our schools, we need to attract and retain teachers and other staff members that meet our highest expectations. Recognizing that compensation is one important part of attracting and retaining a great staff, we contracted with Evergreen Solutions to assess our current teacher pay plans and to make recommendations regarding our compensation practices. Evergreen Solutions presented their final report at our work session.

Evergreen’s analysis indicated that our teacher pay plans generally rank in the middle third of the comparator market. Aspects of our teacher pay plans rank in the bottom third of the comparator market. Evergreen Solutions presented two options that would place our teacher pay plans in the top third of our comparator market, which is one of the objectives of our strategic plan. As we move forward during the budget process, we plan to further assess these options.

We also received an update at our work session from our Superintendent regarding preliminary information pertaining to the FY15 Operating Budget. Twelve facts regarding the FY15 Operating Budget are available at the bottom of this email and on the budget page of our website. You are welcome to provide School Board members, members of the Board of Supervisors, and our state legislators with input regarding funding for our schools. Contact information for each of these three groups is available via this link.

Your input is very important. Please let members of the Board of Supervisors and state legislature know whether the level of funding provided for our schools is appropriate. Please let the School Board know your input regarding the division’s expenditures.

Important work and meetings will occur in February and March:

  • The General Assembly will be working on the budget throughout February and at the beginning of March.
  • 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, 2/4: Board of Supervisors, Public Forum, FY15 Budget, York Hall;
  • 7:00 p.m., Monday, 2/24: School Board, Public Hearing, FY15 Budget, York Hall;
  • 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, 3/18: Board of Supervisors, Presentation of Proposed FY15 Budget & Public Comment Period, York Hall; and
  • 7:00 p.m., Monday, 3/24, School Board Meeting with Public Comment Period, York Hall.


Thank you for your support of our schools.

Mark Medford
School Board Chair
On Behalf of the York County School Board

York County School Division FY15 Budget Twelve Facts

  1. During the last five years, our schools have experienced historic reductions in state aid, leading to cutting 143 positions (leaving 1726 full-time positions in the current budget), reductions in instructional and operational spending, and new fees for students.
  2. While student achievement generally remains high, data indicates some areas of concern relating to our students’ performance.
  3. The state rates York County as having a relatively high ability to fund K-12 education, but we spend significantly fewer dollars per student than our eight nearby comparator divisions.
  4. The Governor’s proposed budget would provide additional funds to our school division but does not restore the arbitrary reductions made to changes in SOQ funding. The General Assembly is making decisions now regarding next year’s funding for our schools.
  5. The Superintendent’s preliminary recommendations for next year’s budget includes reductions of more than $1.5 million, including savings relating to electricity, health insurance and decreased compensation due to staff turnover.
  6. The preliminary recommendations include more than $2.4 million to address rising student enrollment and to meet federal and state requirements relating to the Virginia Retirement System and serving students with special needs.
  7. In order to sustain and build on the excellence of our schools, we need to attract and retain teachers and other staff members that meet our highest expectations. To make our compensation more competitive, the preliminary recommendations include an additional $2.9 million for salaries. This is a placeholder amount only. The Superintendent has not made a recommendation regarding compensation yet.
  8. In order to have 1 high school or middle school counselor for every 301 students, the preliminary recommendations include funds for 2.5 additional secondary counselors. This staffing level would still be below the level of 250:1 ratio recommended by the American School Counselor Association.
  9. The preliminary recommendations would restore the $300,000 (50%) reduction in funds for textbooks and instructional materials. Next year most of these funds would be used to purchase books for elementary school students.
  10. The preliminary recommendations would restore some of the funds needed to maintain our technology infrastructure. The funds would pay for storage networks and servers needed to operate our technology infrastructure. We would continue to use a longer replacement cycle for computers than most divisions, businesses, and families. This would not address demand for additional student computers or bandwidth.
  11. The preliminary recommendations would not restore most of the cuts of recent years. For example, the overwhelming majority of the 143 positions cut in recent years would not be restored. Health insurance benefits would not be restored to previous levels. New fees implemented in recent years would not be abolished.
  12. Unless the county increases funding for the schools, a budget gap of $2.9 million is anticipated based on the preliminary recommendations for the budget.

The York County School Division website contains links to other sites that are not owned or controlled by York County School Division. Be advised that we, the York County School Division,
are not responsible or liable for the content, security or information of these sites. These external links are provided for your convenience.