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PPS forecasts $22 million budget gap

December 17, 2012
Portland Public Schools projects a $22 million budget shortfall for the 2013-14 school year, based on Governor Kitzhaber’s proposed budget, according to a budget forecast presented to the Portland School board.
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PPS budget forecast

The school board received a budget forecast for the 2013-14 school year, under 3 different state funding scenarios. Under these different scenarios, Portland Public Schools would face:

  • $22 million shortfall (equivalent to more than 220 teaching positions), under Governor Kitzhaber’s proposed budget which includes an appropriation of $6.15 billion for K-12 education in the 2013-15 biennium, and also proposes legislative approval of statewide changes to Oregon’s Public Employee Retirement System (PERS) that would yield $253 million in cost-reductions for school districts.
  • $32 million shortfall (equivalent to more than 330 teaching positions), based on the Governor’s proposed $6.15 billion for K-12 education for K-12 education in the 2013-15 biennium, without the proposed changes to PERS.
  • $6 million surplus under a $6.895 billion funding level for K-12 education in the 2013-15 biennium, based on the recommendation of the Quality Education Commission.

The $6.895 million funding level recommended by the Quality Education Commission would represent the first step toward a ten-year phase-in of full funding of the Quality Education Model (QEM).

The model is the level of K-12 education programming that the state has determined would provide students with a well-rounded array of educational opportunities necessary to meet the state’s 40-40-20 goal (in which 100 percent of students are completing high school by 2025, with 80 percent going on to obtain a two-year or four-year degree). Currently, PPS is funded at less than 75 percent of QEM, which represents the loss of approximately $117 million in state funding for the 2012-13 school year.

Forecast assumptions
Overall, the PPS budget forecast included a 3 percent increase in expenditures and an assumed 4 percent contingency reserve (up from 3.5 percent in the current school year).

  • The forecast does not assume the continuation of one-time savings built into the current 2012-13 school year budget, such as 3 days of furloughs for principals, vice principals or assistant principals, or 6-10 days of furloughs for central office staff.

If the Governor’s proposed PERS reforms are implemented, PPS is estimated to save $10 million in PERS costs. However, PERS costs would still rise by more than $4 million (12 percent).

Proposed changes to funding for Education Services Districts are also estimated to cost Portland Public Schools approximately $4 million next year.

Get involved
Public input sessions on the budget and further board work sessions will be held this winter. Superintendent Carole Smith will present her proposed budget to the school board on April 15.

View the PPS 2013 State Legislative Platform in the Dec. 17 Portland School Board meeting materials.


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