You are close to having all of the information you need to make a solid projection of settle-up for the 2019-2020 school year, which will be important for closing the books on this year and beginning budgets for next year. This article contains information on how to estimate settle-up in what has been a challenging year.
You are close to having all of the information you need to making a solid projection of settle-up for the 2019-2020 school year, which will be important for closing the books on this year and beginning budgets for next year. As you complete your 2019-2020 templates to see where you will come out, consider the following:
The 2019 PVS Property Value: The 2019 PVS preliminary values are posted to the comptroller's website here, are pre-loaded into your template, and also now show up on your most recent SOF run on line 7. This is the value you should be using for 2019-2020 state aid calculations unless you know that your CAD has filed an appeal with the comptroller's office. If that is the case, work with your CAD and / or your consultant to help you estimate a good value for projecting year-end settle up. Remember, the higher the PVS value you use, the lower your state aid will likely be.
2019 Property Tax Collections: By now, most districts have collected the bulk of property taxes for the 2020 fiscal year. Consider using historical data on the percentage of property tax collections that have come in to the district by this point in the year in prior years to estimate where you might be at year end given what you have collected so far this year.
ADA and Student Counts: Since TEA has announced it will only use data from the first 4 six weeks periods this year, you should have what you need to project year-end ADA now. TEA has said it will take the average daily attendance (ADA) as calculated through the end of the fourth six weeks, and then adjust the resulting ADA to account for historical differences in attendance from the first four six-week periods and the last two six-week periods.
We recommend you do the following:
1. Look at your district's 2018-2019 superintendent's six week's report of ADA. Add total ADA from six weeks 1, 2, 3, and 4 together and divide by 4. Then take final ADA for the year and divide by the average ADA for the first 4 six weeks. This will give you a decimal that is close to 1. If ADA fell slightly in the last two six weeks periods, it will be slightly less than 1. If ADA grew, it will be slightly more than 1.
2. Look at the same information for the 2019-2020 school year. Add total ADA from six weeks 1, 2, 3, and 4 together and divide by 4 to get total ADA for the first 4 six weeks. Multiply this ADA count by the decimal you calculated in step 1.
3. You will adjust the student counts for special programs that are ADA or FTE-based by the same decimal you calculated in step 1 (i.e. special education FTEs, bilingual education ADA, career and technology FTEs, early education ADA). You will not use this fraction for counts that are enrollment based.
This process should produce student counts that are very similar to what TEA will show when it runs the Near Final summary of finance next September.