Superintendent’s Comments – February 12, 2019

Dr. Lynda C. Andre
February 12, 2019

  • Focus on Finance Report: Implementation of Proposition E Financial Goals
  • Lincoln School Alumni Foundation Donation
  • School Messenger Parent App

Focus on Finance Report: Implementation of Proposition E Financial Goals
At Monday night’s regular meeting, Assistant Superintendent for Business Operations, Dave Courtney provided a financial update to the board and community on the progress being made toward District 7 achieving financial stability as a result of the passage of Proposition E in April 2017.

With the passage of Proposition E, the District has begun the slow process of restoring financial stability, fulfilling a promise made to the community. However, the District and Board of Education must continue to carefully monitor expenditures to avoid returning to the financial uncertainty the District has experienced since 2009.

For the first time in eleven years, the District has a balanced budget and is on track to begin reducing the Education Fund debt during the 2018-2019 school year. It is projected that, assuming financial conditions and state funding remain on track and expenditure increases are controlled, the District will pay off its Education Fund debt by the end of the 2019-2020 school year and should then be in a position to achieve a 10% fund balance reserve by the end of the 2022-2023 school year.

Two of the promises made to the District 7 community during the Proposition E campaign were:

  • Achievement of a balanced budget by June 30, 2019 as required by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and
  • Elimination of the District’s accumulating Education Fund debt.

The original 2018-2019 budget and current mid-year projection indicates that the District remains on track to reduce the Education Fund negative fund balance (debt) from $5.3 million to approximately $1.9 million by June 30, 2019.

In addition, as a result of having a balanced budget in the Education Fund this year, the District will not have to transfer tax levy funding from the Working Cash Fund ($700,000) to the Education Fund-beginning the restoration of Working Cash Fund reserves which have been depleted since June 30, 2016.

Lincoln School Alumni Foundation Donation
We are fortunate to have citizens in our community such as those in the Lincoln School Alumni Foundation who care about District 7 students, teachers, and families in the generous ways they have over many years.

Once again, this group of citizens’ generosity is only exceeded by their enthusiasm and commitment to our school district. Their donations have provided financial support to programs that benefit students; including, college entrance exam prep courses, middle school tutoring, elementary summer reading programs, and principal-led school initiatives.

On behalf of District 7’s 7,600 students and over 450 teachers, I want to express our sincerest appreciation to the Lincoln School Alumni Foundation for their most recent donation of $20,000.

SchoolMessenger Parent App
At Monday night’s board meeting, the District introduced the second of three communication enhancements for parents. After launching updated websites, District 7 is now releasing a parent app that will consolidate all emails, phone calls, and text messages from the District into a new communications app. Parents and employees can:

  • Set communications preferences for calls, emails, texts, and more
  • Receive all kinds of school messages (classroom and group updates, activity alerts, school and district notifications) in one single app
  • Review messages on any device – smartphone, laptop, etc.

Go to http://go.schoolmessenger.com to download the SchoolMessenger mobile app for Apple and Android devices or use the web-based version from your internet browser to sign up.

With the new SchoolMessenger app, parents, employees, and community members have 24/7/365 access to important school notifications such as weather and emergency alerts.