Lincoln-Way District 210 board members approved the 2012-2013 budget amounting to $97,145,292, a decrease of $80,701 from the previous year.
Superintendent Lawrence Wyllie said in a Sept. 13 meeting that the tax rate for the 2011 is less than it was 22 years ago. In 2011, the tax rate was 1.8306 compared to the 1989 rate of 1.9283.
In a previous article, Supt. Lawrence Wyllie explained that 2011-12 revenues did not match expenditures. The district's reserves had to be used to cover the $3.27 million shortfall.
In addition, a drop in the the equalized assessed valuation reflects the decreased tax rate. This year's EAV dropped $169,815,256 from $3,991,068,924 last year to $3,821,253,668 this year, according to Stacy Holland, director of community relations. The total collected in taxes will be $69,951,289.
Over the last four years, expenditures have been reduced by a little more than $8 million, Wyllie said.
A public hearing for the budget was held Sept. 11. No one from the public attended the meeting.
The drop in numbers reflects the diminished value of property throughout the Lincoln-Way region over the past several years.
"The slow state of the economy and the state of Illinois' lack of paying for categorical programs have put school districts and municipal governments in a bind," Wyllie said. "We are working our way through it as all families in Illinois are doing as well."
Speaking specifically about the delayed payments to the school district from the state, he said the state still owes about $1.5 million from last year.
Despite the financial difficulties, Wyllie boasted that student academic achievement has not suffered. The student body continues to excel, a characteristic that Wyllie attributes to the faculty and staff.
In light of the cut in expenditures, Lincoln-Way District 210 per pupil spending is the fifth lowest in the six collar counties around Chicago. Niles Township High School District 219 tops the list of per pupil expenditure at $22,915, while Lincoln-Way District stands at $11,708 per pupil.
Tough Economy Opens Hearts and Hands
As families throughout the community have struggled in this economy, many of the students have learned about self-giving and outreach locally, regionally and globally.
About 50 cheerleaders from Lincoln-Way West High School joined together with volunteers from Lincoln-Way Area MobilePack to support the Feed My Starving Children MobilePack event. In August, more than 650 volunteers worked a two-day event to pack dried meals for starving children in Haiti.
Holland said the volunteers worked out of Lincoln-Way West High School and packed a total of 139,536 meals, enough food to feed 382 desperately hungry children in Haiti for an entire year.
The leaders of LAMP, Barb Stellwagen and Sandy Peterson, thanked the Board of Education for its support and outreach.
Social Science Teachers Advocate for Reading Skills
Reading and writing may indeed be within the realm of the English Department, but social science teachers updated the Board of Education on how reading strategies have been incorporated into their curriculum as well.