Track 18: Communication: Educating Your Publics on School Finance
Teachers, district patrons, and legislators are more likely to add support for fiscal decisions when they better understand school finance.  In this session you will develop strategies for communicating the realities of school funding and budgets to all your district's publics.  Learn ways to educate people on how tax rates are impacted by the tax base and assessment practices, the difference between residential and ag land valuations, how to calculate the affect of the state roll back on property tax assessment, the distinction between unspent balance and cash balance, levies available to districts as well as the uniform levy, foundation level, the difference between the school house and the general fund, and state foundation aid.  Discover understandable approaches to communicating fiscal terms including undesignated, unreserved fund balance; solvency ratio; cash reserve; income surtax; and bonding capacity.

The following materials are needed for this track:
(1) Copy of district audit (management discussion and analysis); (2) an example of communication challenge and a clipping that demonstrates the nature of coverage of local paper (clipping, story, or conversation with a legislator, etc.); (3) calculator.
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