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Budget Information

Budget Information

We teach, support, and challenge students to excel through high-quality instruction and social-emotional learning. Wenatchee is home to thousands of students from preschool to high school, all preparing for their futures. Everyone from district leadership to teachers and staff is committed to seeing students become future-ready. Our budget is a values statement. We prioritize partnering with our stakeholders to be good stewards of the financial resources allotted to us. 

Proposed Budget Reductions Summary for 2024-2025 

The Wenatchee School District’s enrollment has been on the decline since 2015. Since that time, 916 full-time equivalents (FTE) have left the district. School districts are funded based on enrollment, which means when enrollments go down, the district receives fewer funds to pay for staffing. Staffing makes up approximately 85% of the district’s budget. In effect, the district must make reductions to balance staffing with enrollment.

Enrollment Decline
Based on projections, the number of students enrolling in our schools is expected to keep decreasing due to lower birth rates, smaller kindergarten classes, and new private and charter school educational options in our community. Additionally, the school district is facing a reduction in Local Effort Assistance (LEA) funds, Regionalization funds, and Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds while salaries and benefits are increasing. 

Reduction Target Amount
As a result, the school district has set a budget reduction target between $8 million to $9 million for the 2024-2025 academic year. To reach this target and balance staffing with enrollment, the district has proposed a reduction strategy that includes making staffing reductions at the elementary, middle and high school levels. The plan also includes additional district-wide staffing reductions and reductions in materials supplies and operational costs (MSOC).

Budget Reduction Plan
Below is an illistration of the budget reductions the district is proposing for the 2024-2025 school year. This plan allows us to reduce $8.9 million in staffing costs and materials supplies and operations costs, which represents an annual savings to the district. 

Middle and High School Schedule Changes
Staffing reductions at the middle and high school levels will happen through schedule changes that require less staff to operate. Through these changes, all three middle schools will operate on a common daily schedule and the Wenatchee High School will change from a 4x4 block schedule to a six period schedule.

School Closure
At the elementary level, where enrollment decline has been the most significant, the district is proposing the conolidations of elementary schools from seven to six. This proposal would close Columbia Elementary in the 2024-2025 school year. Students at Columbia would be reassigned to Lincoln and Washington Elemenarys to continue their education. 

The district will hold two public hearings to receive testimony on the proposed closure of Columbia from the public on March 21 and April 18 at 6 PM in the Wenatchee High School Commons, 1101 Millerdale Ave. The school board will make a final decision on the closure on May 14, 2024 at 6 PM during their regular board meeting at the district’s central office 235 Sunset Ave. Wenatchee.

Budget Reduction Info and Documents

Public Hearings: Possible Closure of Columbia Elementary School 

March 21, 2024
6:00 - 9:00 PM
Wenatchee High School Commons (1101 Millerdale Ave.)
Live stream available

April 18, 2024
6:00 - 9:00 PM
Wenatchee High School Commons (1101 Millerdale Ave.)
Live stream available 

  • Public comments will only be accepted in person.
  • Remote commenting is not available through Zoom.
  • Signage, banners, and/or displays are prohibited inside Wenatchee High School before, during, and after the hearing.
  • Speakers must complete a public comment form prior to speaking. 
  • English speakers will be allowed 3 minutes of comment time.
  • Spanish speakers will be allowed 7 minutes to accommodate for Spanish interpretation if necessary. The district will provide a certified Spanish interpreter.
  • The hearing will end at 9:00 PM or when the last comment is made, whichever comes first. 
  • One comment per person. ‘Donating’ time to another person so they can speak longer is prohibited.
  • The school board will not respond to comments or questions given during testimony.

Public comments will also be accepted by the school board via email at school_board@wenatcheeschools.org

The hearings will be live-streamed and recorded on the district’s YouTube channel. Language access closed captioning is available through the closed caption setting on YouTube.

The board is expected to take action on a final decision regarding the proposed closure during their regular board meeting at 6 PM on Tuesday, May 14, 2024. 
 

Upcoming Budget Related School Board Meetings 

School Board Meeting - May 14 @ 6:00 PM Live Stream Available

Past Budget Information 

Upcoming Events

June 19
June 25

Board Meeting

6:00 PM

August 20

Principal Days

Start: Aug 20, 2024 End: Aug 21, 2024

Multi-Day Event

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