The District-wide budget development process is a collaborative process involving many stakeholders including school personnel, School Site Councils (SSCs), English Learner Advisory Committee (ELAC), Community Advisory Committee for Special Education (CAC), District Advisory Committee (DAC), District EnglishLearner Advisory Committee (DELAC), Finance, the Chief Financial Officer, the Superintendent and the Board of Education.
The budget reflects the labor and material resources required to fulfill the goals and objectives outlined by the Board. The budget serves as an operational plan, stated in financial terms, for carrying out the goals of the school system.
The budget preparation process begins each year in September and continues through June with the adoption of the budget by the Board of Education. During this time period, the Financial Planning department works with the demographer and with school and program administrators to determine enrollment projections and anticipated programmatic changes. Go to the Budget Process Timeline».
On or before July 1 of each year, Education Code Section 42127 requires the District to accomplish the following.
Hold a public hearing on the budget to be adopted for the subsequent fiscal year. The budget to be adopted shall be prepared in accordance with Section 42126. The agenda for that hearing shall be posted at least 72 hours prior to the public hearing and shall include the location where the budget will be available for public inspection.
Adopt a budget. Not later than five days after that adoption or by July 1, whichever occurs first, the governing board shall file that budget with the County Superintendent of Schools. That budget and supporting data shall be made available for public review.
Not later than 45 days after the Governor signs the annual Budget Act, the District shall make available for public review any revisions in revenues and expenditures that it has made to its budget to reflect the funding made available by that Budget Act.
Training and Distribution of Budget Materials
During January and February, the Financial Planning department conducts training classes for schools and central office unit staff on utilizing the computerized budget workbook. The department also reviews training manuals and a budget calendar outlining the entire budget process with area superintendents, principals and central office managers.
School Site Budget Development
The development of a school budget is a critical component of the District-wide process. A school’s budget is often driven by allocation formulae, contractual obligations, District-wide policies and procedures, and school-based initiatives.
The process starts with schools’ enrollment projections and programmatic requirements. The Financial Planning department sends each school a budget workbook showing its resource allocations; it contains various components such as enrollment, staffing and prior year expenditures.
School administrators review the budget and work with their School Site Council (SSC) in making decisions regarding staffing and resource allocations for the following year. The principal, SSC and area superintendent must approve the budget before it is returned to the Financial Planning department.
The budget, as well as a single plan for student achievement (SPSA), are reviewed by the Program Monitoring Department. This department is composed of certificated staff that ensures sound instructional plans.
The budget is then reviewed/approved by the Board of Education.
Adjustments are made in October once actual enrollments are known.