Superintendent of the year?

March 19, 2020

This has not happened yet but it appears that EPISD staff thinks very highly of their superintendent:

We deserve better

Brutus


Evidently it isn’t bribery if the government does it

March 17, 2020

This may turn out to be good news for teachers at EPISD.

This recommendation is part of a budget presentation to be made at the Tuesday, March 24, 2020 Board of Trustees budget workshop meeting”

It is recommended that the Board of Trustees approve the proposed End ­of Year Employee Stipend in the amount of $3,537,726.00 to
eligible employees at the end of the Spring Semester for the 2019-­2020 school year, as presented.

Bribe

I don’t begrudge the teachers the money.

Unfortunately as part of the district’s effort to get voter approval of $668 million in bonds the district promised the teachers two bribes, a 750 dollar bonus last year and a 500 dollar bonus this year.

The district needed the votes of the teachers.

We deserve better

Brutus


Public charter school attendance effect on local school district revenue

March 16, 2020

There have been some comments about how public charter schools take money from our local independent school districts.

In fact they do.

If we look at EPISD this year they will get about 560 million dollars in funding.  Roughly 379 million will come from state and federal funding.  Another 182 million will come from local property taxes.  About 32.5 percent of the district’s funding comes from local property taxes.

If a child leaves EPISD and goes to a public charter school the district loses their state and federal funding for that child.

However it keeps the local property taxes.

While the district loses about 66% of their total funding for that child they get to keep the 32.5% that comes from local property taxes.

Since the child no longer attends the district this is free money and actually helps pay for things that the remaining children in the district get.

We deserve better

Brutus

 


EPISD debt service

March 7, 2020

EPISD is having a board meeting Thursday, March 12, 2020.

One of the items they will discuss is their debt service fund budget projections.

Here is what the backup material for the agenda item shows:

They evidently don’t want the public to know.

We deserve better

Brutus


Shrinking school districts

March 2, 2020

Mr.  Moore over at elpasomatters.org published a remarkable set of statistics the other day in a post about public school enrollment in El Paso:

El Paso County schools – including both traditional school districts and charter schools – had 34,603 students enrolled in kindergarten, first grade and second grade this year, according to data released in March 2019 by the Texas Education Agency. That’s down more than 5,000 from the 2011-12 enrollment in those grades, according to TEA records, a decline of 13%.

********************

Those 5,000 fewer students will soon be missing from upper grades at the children get older.

Yet the school districts continue to build new schools.

We deserve better

Brutus


EPISD feathering their nest

February 25, 2020

Item J on the EPISD February 18, 2020 board of trustees meeting consent agenda reads:

Approval of Change Order No. 05 for EPISD Downtown Administration Building 1100 N. Stanton, CMAR #18-030, Project No, 17.634A, to HB Construction, for $428,537.00 (177X Maintenance Tax Notes)

The backup material explains:

The change order is for an Owner-initiated request for modifications to the floor plans on the second through the eighth floor. These modifications are a result of changes in the District’s organizational structure.  This change order, if approved, will increase the contract sum by $428,537.00, or 1.9%, bringing the contract amount to $21,914,439.  Prior change orders to date total $151,323, and are included in the contract amount of $21,914,439.  Board Policy CV (Local) requires administration to present any changes for an adjustment of cost greater  than or equal to $50,000.00 or changes in the aggregate above fifteen percent (15%) of the original contract value be taken to the Board for approval.  The project includes a contingency of $794,852.09 of which $210,954 has already been used leaving a balance of $585,898.09.  Staff is recommending this change order be funded from other project funding and not the contingency account as doing so would leave a balance of $155,361.09 in contingency for any potential change orders.  Given that the project is approximately 28% complete, reducing the contingency to that amount is not recommended.

Organizational structure

We haven’t heard anything from the district about changes to their organizational structure.  Yet they want to make changes on the second through the eighth floor.

It is in particular troubling to see that they don’t want to take the money out of the contingency fund out of fear that they will not have enough money left to make any more changes.

We deserve better

Brutus


Saddling our kids with debt

February 10, 2020

It looks like EPISD is going to sell that last of the 2016 bonds.

Note that they expect to have them paid off in the year 2048.

Today’s 17 year old high school senior will be 45 years old.

We deserve better

Brutus


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