Dear Lovejoy Community:
As you know, the Texas Legislature is now in session. I am sure you have heard there is a focus on school finance, which might be a good thing for Lovejoy. However, the proposals that are being floated would result in a net negative for Lovejoy ISD. As you may remember, we made a strong community push in the special session in 2017, which resulted in the inclusion of Hardship Grants to soften the loss of state funding. As a reminder, Lovejoy was scheduled to lose $5.9 million in state aid. Through the Hardship Grant, we only lost $ 2.9 million. The Hardship Grants are scheduled to expire at the end of this school year. Even if the legislature adds some money to school finance, we could easily experience a net negative with the loss of the $2.9 million in grant funds. We need the Hardship Grants extended for two more years. (96 districts statewide received this grant.)
We are committed to work diligently with the Legislature on these issues. We have two newly elected officials in Austin: Senator Angela Paxton and Representative Candy Noble.
At this early juncture, we are focused on the revenue we currently have complete control over. As a reminder, the following sources provide direct revenue to our district:
- The tuition-based enrollment program (Lovejoy Scholars) is approaching $2 million in contributions to our budget. You can help by referring families who live outside of Lovejoy boundaries to apply for tuition-based enrollment.
- Through our partnership with Tutoring 101, we have a full range of tutoring offered at Lovejoy High School. Our district receives a percentage of these funds.
- We offer fee based SAT prep at Lovejoy High School which generates a profit for us.
- We offer tuition-based Pre-K at Puster (Little Lovejoy Scholars). You can impact the bottom line by enrolling your 4 year old in this program.
- We offer Summer Enrichment Camps for all of our kids, which generate revenue for the district. Look for news regarding the camps in principal emails and Email Express.
- Our three elementary schools host campus campouts during the spring semester. We hope you will participate in this family event that provides a memorable experience for parents and students while generating funds through business sponsors and registration fees.
- The Foundation for Lovejoy Schools provides grants to our district. You can increase these grants by attending Denim and Diamonds, which is next week on Saturday, February 2.
- We are exploring naming rights options for our facilities and advertising in our larger venues.
- Finally, if you need services from any of the following, members of the Circle of Partners have pledged a 10% donation back to Lovejoy ISD based on any business generated from the Lovejoy community. Our partners are as follows:
One of the options we considered in 2017 to address the shortfall of state funding was a fee for service approach. This option would have required our parent community to pay a fee for services such as transportation, extracurricular activities, etc. We were able to eliminate this option after the Legislature approved the Hardship Grants. Our goal is to protect our existing programs without considering fees for service for the 2019-2020 school year.
Our efforts are concentrated on working with the Texas Legislature regarding school finance. We hope you will assist us in the revenue generating options described above. As always, we thank you for your support of Lovejoy ISD and hope you and your family Love Where You Learn.