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Informaline April 4, 2016

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Virtual Backpack/La Mochila Virtual

Recent Cuts Help District Manage Expenses, Keep Tax Rate Steady
The West Des Moines Community Schools’ decision in December to trim its 2016-17 budget by $560,000 may have helped keep its tax rate relatively steady and manage what many Iowa education leaders are calling inadequate state funding.

During a School Board workshop last week, Chief Financial Officer Paul Bobek presented a proposed publish tax rate of $13.37 per $1,000 of assessed valuation for 2016-17. This is slightly higher than the current $13.24 rate, but he estimates that the rate will remain at its current level once finalized. If approved by the School Board, the rate will continue to be the lowest in the metro area. Other area districts are 32 to 53 percent higher. The WDMCS has been able to maintain its low tax rate for the past few years because of the community’s strong property values.

The district’s proposed certified budget for 2016-17 includes an additional $589,558 under the 2.25 percent funding increase recently approved by lawmakers. Bobek said the increase is for regular programming costs and will not fully cover expenses even with the recent cuts. The School Board may decide to use district reserves to cover the remaining expenses.

A hearing on the district’s proposed $198 million certified budget for 2016-17 will be held at 7 p.m. on April 11 at the Learning Resource Center, 3550 Mills Civic Parkway, in West Des Moines.

School Board Holds Public Hearings April 11
The West Des Moines Community Schools Board of Education will hold public hearings on the following topics at 7 p.m. on Monday, April 11:

Coalition Fights Youth Substance Abuse
The West Des Moines Substance Abuse Prevention Community Coalition (SAPCC) works to promote cooperative community efforts related to the prevention of substance abuse. It has initiated and supports numerous substance abuse prevention activities.

If you are interested in contributing to a healthier community, read on to find out more.

KWDM Students Give Valley a Voice
Staff members at Valley High School’s student radio station, 88.7 FM, KWDM, The Point, take on many tasks, from reading weather reports to crafting playlists that have something for everyone. The station has evolved with the student population over the years, resulting in an eclectic mix of music, talk radio, and sports coverage. Through all the station’s changes, one thing has endured: the students’ dedication. When the students cue songs or report live from sporting events, they know they are not only developing a lifelong skill but acting as the voice of their school. Read more about KWDM and the students who rock the station on our district website at bit.ly/KWDM-article.

Disinfectant Mister Keeps Students and Staff Healthy
The WDMCS Operations Department is using a new Vital Oxide mister to keep the district healthy. The mister is used every day at Valley High School and Valley Southwoods to disinfect the weight rooms and at other buildings to stop illness from spreading.

Vital Oxide kills most common viruses, including norovirus, influenza A, and MRSA. The mist is a particularly efficient disinfectant because it acts quickly and is fast to apply. Read more about the Vital Oxide mister on the website.

Discover the District’s Pinterest
You are invited to pin with us! Discover the WDMCS Pinterest and all the resources it has to offer. Our Pinterest account is all about sharing the great things that happen in WDMCS, providing parents helpful tips, and gathering inspiration to make learning even more personal and exciting. Get a sneak peek at our Pinterest on our website! With pins that highlight our students, staff, and families, we invite you to find your own inspiration on our Pinterest boards.

Topics: Informaline