Good Afternoon Falcon Families,
Since my last communication to families, additional questions have been raised focusing on the face to face reopening on August 17th. I'd like to take this opportunity to share with you some of the constraints that we are facing as a district due to funding.
In order for the district to receive full funding from the state, our students must be enrolled in traditional school and per the Governor's order start on August 17th. For every child that is enrolled in traditional school, we receive 100% of our
state funding per student. For every child that is enrolled in virtual instruction, we may only receive 85% of our state funding. The district was originally budgeted to receive $10.9 million in state funding this year to support our staffing and district operations. Should we choose to close the schools and lose 15% of that funding, it could result in a loss of $1.6 million in funding for salaries.
Governor Ducey’s Executive Order announced on June 29th guaranteed that we would not lose more than 2% of our funding as long as we did the following:
1. Follow our district calendar that was approved prior to his executive order and remain open the same number of days as we were last school year.
2. Provide face to face instruction starting August 17th.
3. Provide onsite instructional opportunities for all families requiring child care for school age children. This must take place regardless if we are open on August 17th or if we provide distance learning.
4. Take daily student attendance and provide sufficient instructional hours to receive funding.
As long as the Governor chooses to delay school, he is responsible for funding our school system. If we choose to delay school or only provid
e online instruction, we are choosing to possibly have our funding reduced by 2%-17% depending upon instructional models.
As many of you may have heard, districts across the state are also receiving CARES Act funding to remediate the expenses incurred due to COVID 19. The funding is meant to assist us with a variety of expenses such as cleaning supplies and equipment and personal protective equipment (PPE). One of the possible uses of the funding is to replace state funding that we may lose from enrollment in online instruction.
FHUSD has applied to receive CARES Act funding totaling $116,000. Here are the funding amounts other surrounding schools received: Chandler USD $4.3 MILLION; Mesa USD $22.6 MILLION; Phoenix Union $15.8 MILLION; Paradise Valley $5.0 MILLION; Scottsdale USD $2.7 MILLION. As you can see, other districts received millions of dollars in comparison to our $116,000 but it is important to acknowledge that they have expenses in cleaning materials and supplies and PPE on a much larger scale.
I know and appreciate that this is a very difficult time for our community, county, state, and nation. I am confident that our schools are clean, sanitized, and that we are taking all the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of our staff and students. We have the needed and required PPE. We have updated our cleaning and sanitizing procedures. We've ensured that we are adjusting our schedules and classes to keep cohorts of children together. We will make sure that we are following all the rules and requirements to ensure the safety of all to the best of our ability.
Thank you for your patience as we continue to work through the ever changing landscape of our schools reopening.