Home > Community Updates, District News > Parent Update – November 8, 2009

Parent Update – November 8, 2009

November 9, 2009

Board of Education Takes First Step Toward Placing Operating Levy on February 2010 Ballot

The Olmsted Falls Board of Education met on Thursday, November 5th at 7:oo PM in public session in order to discuss the results of the November 3rd vote on the 6.4 mill operating levy.  At this meeting, the Board of Education took the first step in placing an operating levy on the February 2010 ballot by passing several resolutions.  Note:  Ohio Law dictates that the first resolution for placing an operating levy on the February ballot occur on or before November 9th.

After exploring a financial model that encompassed several assumptions (examples:  future health care premium rate increases, number of teachers rehired should a levy pass, likely cut in funding from the State of Ohio in the summer of 2010) the Board of Education passed five resolutions asking the Cuyahoga County auditor to certify the of amount revenue that would be generated from a 7.9, 8.2, 8.4, 8.7, and 8.9 mill levy.  According to Board of Education projections, only the 8.7 and 8.9 mill levies would allow the District to remain “in the black” through the 2013 school year.

The Board of Education has scheduled another public meeting on Wednesday, November 11th at 7:00 PM at the Board of Education building (white ranch house in front of Olmsted Falls High School) to again examine these financial projections.  It is expected that the Board of Education will pass the second and final resolution necessary to place an operating levy on the February 2010 ballot (as the deadline for this action is November 19th).

Comments on Blog

It was great to see nearly 70 comments posted to the last blog post.  Nearly 3,900 “visits to this blog” have occurred since the November 4th post.  That is my goal for this blog, to present information to the members of the Olmsted community and allow for public discussion.  As time allows, it is my intention to post responses to some of the posted comments, however, time does not allow for this at the present time.

While the District has offered several public meetings (both evening and weekend meetings were held) over the past two months in order to provide the members of our community with information on the financial operation of the school system, it is somewhat disheartening to read through several posted comments and discover truly how much misinformation or lack of understanding still exists in our community.

One major area of confusion obviously still exists regarding the construction revenue that was generated by the passage of the 2 mill bond issue in May 2007.  This 2 mill bond issue generated approximately $16,000,000 and these funds were utilized for the construction of the new Intermediate School.

Hopefully you remember that the District was able to utilize this $16,000,000 of local funding as matching funds for an Ohio School Facilities Commission (OSFC) program that awarded the District an additional $7,700,000.  This information was shared in writing to all residents of the community in a Business Report which was mailed to homes in March 2008. This $7,700,000 is being utilized to build 20 additional classrooms onto Olmsted Falls Middle School.

Some have questioned why the District did not utilize the revenue from the 2007 Bond Issue, or the $7.7 million from the OSFC, to help cover the pending deficit in the District’s General Fund.  Simply stated, this would not be a legal use for this money as it was passed by the Olmsted community for the purpose of construction. (Note:  the language that appears on the ballot is called the purpose statement and clearly defines how the revenue generated by a tax issue may be used.)

Other community members seem to be confused when looking at the overall financial statements of the District and believe that this District has more money than it is stating. (Note:  the District is audited on an annual basis by the Auditor of the State of Ohio and the results of these audits are available online.)

The quick answer to this is that the District’s financial statements show investments for both the General Fund and the Construction Fund.  While each of these funds show up on the District’s books, the money from each fund cannot be combined.  Simply stated, one fund is for the operation of the District and another fund is for payment to the contractors who are building the Intermediate School and Middle School addition.  In order to see the present condition of the Olmsted Falls General Fund, and the projections of this fund over the next five years, please click here.

We look forward over the coming months to continue to hold community meetings so that the members of the Olmsted community can continue to learn about the financial operation of the Olmsted Falls City Schools.

Donuts with Dad

We are extremely blessed at Olmsted Falls schools to have a very active PTA that continually looks for ways to link our parents, students, and the school system together.  Last week, our Falls-Lenox PTA sponsored Donuts with Dad.  Here are some pictures from this event:

Donuts for Dads #1

Donuts for Dads #2

Olmsted Falls Varsity Wrestling – It is not just about winning, it is about “giving back.”

Annually, the Olmsted Falls varsity wrestling team is one of the strongest programs in NE Ohio.  Our coaching staff, led by Head Coach Mr. McGrain, not only works to develop quality wrestlers, but the entire coaching staff also prioritize  “giving back to the Olmsted community” as a way to develop quality young men.  Last week, as part of their preseason conditioning program, our wrestlers raked leaves for several residents in the OF communities.  Here are some pictures:Wrestlers raking leaves

Wrestlers raking leaves #2

Statewide School Levy Results

Last week, several school districts from around the state of Ohio were on the ballot asking voters to approve various kinds of tax levies.  While the overall passage rate, statewide, was 56.98%, the percentage of new operating money issues receiving voter approval dropped to 28.57%.

The following are the results for the various types of tax issues:

New Current Expense: 4 of 16 approved (25.00%)

Renewal Current Expense: 13 of 13 approved (100.00%)

Replacement Current Expense: 4 of 6 approved (66.67%)

New Substitute Tax levy: 2 of 2 approved (100.00%)

New Emergency: 4 of 22 approved (18.18%)

Renewal Emergency: 31 of 32 approved (96.88%)

Replacement Emergency: 1 of 1 approved (100.00%)

New Traditional Income Tax: 2 of 3 approved (66.67%)

Renewal Traditional Income Tax: 8 of 9 approved (88.89%)

New Earned Income Tax: 2 of 6 approved (33.33%)

Renewal Earned Income Tax: 0 of 1 approved (0.00%)

Repeal of Traditional Income Tax: 0 of 1 approved (0.00%)

New Permanent Improvement: 3 of 15 approved (20.00%)

Renewal Permanent Improvement: 15 of 16 approved (93.75%)

Replacement Permanent Improvement: 4 of 4 approved (100.00%)

New Bond Issues: 13 of 39 approved (33.33%)

The total count of issues for this analysis is based on the list provided by the Office of the Ohio Secretary of State. Please also know that some issues, like the Olmsted Falls levy, were extremely close, and some outcomes may change following the official count in each county and any necessary recounts.

  1. Linda Parkowski
    November 9, 2009 at 10:21 am

    Thanks so much for informing us about the varsity wrestlers and their giving back to the community. I am proud that my young bulldog has recently joined wrestling. Good job coaches and guys!!

  2. RKWEBB
    November 9, 2009 at 6:04 pm

    I applaud Dr. Hoadley in addressing the issues related to the levy, the financial condition of the district, and adressing specific questions and concerns, head-on, of the community. I will certainly agree that it is “disheartening to read through several posted comments and discover truly how much misinformation or lack of understanding still exists in our community”.

    So get some help!

    I’ve said before that the board members need to put in as much of an effort to pass a levy as they would if they had opposition in an election. Fight for it as if it was you job on the line!
    Let’s not stop there. The unopposed mayor and the majority of city council could have, and should now, spend time for the cause too. Better schools….better demand for our community….better home values….better tax collections (Oops, I think I struck a chord and their ears are no longer tin!).

    I live exactly 1.74 miles from the middle school. Looks like we can drop physical education for that my children will get a good workout each day.

    • Mercedez
      November 11, 2009 at 4:44 pm

      Maybe parents should fight for the levy as if their kid’s education was on the line.

  3. Paul & Amy Lesiak
    November 9, 2009 at 7:28 pm

    We applaud you for your continued efforts and are amazed that people continue to be misinformed. We are truly disappointed with the results of the levy and would really like to attend your meeting on Wednesday, 11/11, however the Middle School choir concerts are planned for the same night at the same time! Any chance of delaying your meeting date??

  4. Diana
    November 10, 2009 at 6:21 am

    This is so sad…sad…I can’t even describe how emotional this is.. where is our major and what is he doing to prevent cuts on school busing for our little ones to me this is totally insanity can we stop wasting money on planting trees and stop misusing so much money on things that aren’t necessary . School and transportation is a necessity our major needs to come up with an explanation why our school have to suffer !!enough is enough !!!

    • L. McCafferty
      November 12, 2009 at 6:12 pm

      What trees? Can you please, please cite specific examples of how money is misspent.
      I have read every single document, budget and spending practice the district has graciously provided me with because I “heard” that the administration was top-heavy. Not only did I find this to be untrue, I found that we had far fewer administrators than nearly every neighboring district! Yes, it took me a couple of weeks of research, but I refused to rely on opinions of others. I went to a meeting when I didn’t understand something. I couldn’t believe how forthright the speakers were, backing-up everything they said with documentation. They have stretched 4-5 years worth of levy money into ten years! We should be throwing them a party. My budget is stretched as far as it can go, but I will find a way and continue to educate my neighbors and friends on the facts and if I don’t know an answer, I will ask.

  5. Mom of 2
    November 10, 2009 at 7:08 am

    That is so great that OF wrestlers are raking yards in the neighborhood! Good job.

  6. jim
    November 12, 2009 at 1:22 pm

    Perhaps you should take a minute to get yourself educated on how OFSD spends it’s funds. The board meets often, perhaps you should attend a meeting. Get the facts!
    Try here:
    http://www.yes4ofschools.org/

  7. November 13, 2009 at 9:21 pm

    Let’s put this to bed shall we. Did you know board members prepared for and delivered multiple presentations on the need for the new levy at MULTIPLE (see caps so I’m serious) PUBLIC meetings? Did you know the board members took and answered questions about the levy even when sometimes asked without any grace. Did you know that last winter board members sat in various parent volunteer homes and presented at coffees and took/answered questions? Did you know board members walked and walked and knocked and knocked on home owners doors on multiple dates this last campaign?

    I haven’t been around enough blocks to know where the line is for this role. Is what they are doing notable probably not – have some done more than others, probably, but what has been done by the board doesn’t equate to the nothing often implied. Moreover folks – where were you? I’m not pointing a finger just a reflective question. When the next levy vote comes and goes will you sleep well knowing you did all you could to protect the future of class sizes, busing, football, key club, etc. It all rests in your hands as much as it does any one board member or adminstrator.

  1. No trackbacks yet.
Comments are closed.
%d bloggers like this: