ST. GEORGE – The Washington County School District Board of Education is considering a proposed $211 million maintenance and operations budget for the fiscal year 2017-2018 to fund a rapidly growing number of new students, district administrator Brent Bills told the board at a regular meeting Tuesday.
The district expects to receive a 4 percent increase in state funding and a 3 percent increase in property tax revenue from new growth, Bills said, which will help along with a projected 1,200 new students. There are currently 31,371 students enrolled in schools within the district.
“We’re at just over 4 percent growth,” Bills said.
From Oct. 1, 2016, until January of this year, almost 500 new students, kindergarten to 12th grade, enrolled in the district, District Superintendent Larry Bergeson said at an earlier board meeting. From Oct. 1, 2015, until January, almost 1,700 new students have entered the Washington County School District.
Next year, the district will issue $55 million in bonds in addition to the $35 million in bonds issued in 2016 to continue construction of three new schools: Majestic Fields Elementary, Crimson Middle School and Crimson High School.
The 2017-2018 budget is open for a 30-day review by the public; residents can view both the 2016-2017 final budget and the proposed 2017-2018 budget here.
In other business, the board made changes to policies pertaining to employee leave and graduation requirements and honored 86 district employees who are retiring.
“Throughout your careers, you have been entrusted with some of the most worthwhile work in the world, challenging young minds, providing an environment conducive to learning and preparing your students to become lifelong learners,” Bergeson told the retiring employees.
“We are sincerely grateful for your act of stewardship.”
The board also honored 66 employees for years-of-service milestones.
“We thank you for your commitment to our students and to public education,” Bergeson said.
Ed. note: Edited to clarify budget terms.