Frequently Asked Questions about the 20011-12 Budget
- General Fund ($6.31 billion): used for the basic instructional, support, and administrative operations of the district, including services to regular K-12 schools, the special education program, and other programs. $3.43 billion of the General Fund is “unrestricted” and can be used for any general education purpose. The other $2.88 billion is “restricted” and must be used for specific designated purposes.
- Cafeteria Fund ($310 million): used to operate the District’s food service program.
- Adult Education Fund ($174 million): used to operate adult education programs.
- Child Development Fund ($139 million): used to operate child development programs such as the District’s Early Childhood Education Centers.
Deferred Maintenance Fund ($19 million): used for such major maintenance projects as repair of plumbing, heating, air conditioning, electrical, roofing, floors, and interior or exterior paint. Per guidance from the California Department of Education (CDE), the remaining resources in deferred maintenance funds will be in the general fund starting in fiscal year 2011-12.
• Bond funding for the school building program so LAUSD students can attend a neighborhood school on a traditional calendar year. Bond money cannot be used to pay for general education expenses.
• County School Facilities funds
• Special Reserve funds
• Debt Service Funds
• Internal Service Funds
• Fiduciary funds
LAUSD receives its revenue for the General Fund from a combination of local, state, and federal sources.
The largest source of revenue for the General Fund is the “Revenue Limit,” totaling $3 billion. The Revenue Limit is a combination of local property taxes and state sales and income taxes, which the State allocates to the District on the basis of the District’s Average Daily Attendance (ADA, average number of students who attend school on a daily basis), and not on the basis of the District’s total K-12 enrollment. Each California school district has its own revenue limit based on its type (elementary, high school, or unified), size (small or large), historical spending patterns, and numerous other variables. $2.23 billion of the Revenue Limit comes from the state, with the other $776 million coming from local governments.
In addition to the Base Revenue Limit, the State allocates other revenue, some for general purposes, like Lottery Revenue, and others for specific purposes, such as K-3 class size reduction, home-to-school transportation, middle and high school supplemental school counseling, professional development and other categories. More recently, in order to give school districts flexibility in an environment of reduced resources, the State has lifted restrictions on certain categorical funding, allowing districts to redirect the funding to any educational purposes. The State of California also provides revenue for low-income students and English Learners through what is called Economic Impact Aid.
Another major source of revenue for LAUSD comes from the federal government. Most federal funds are to be used for specific purposes or categories of students and are meant to supplement the District’s “base” program. The largest single component of federal revenue is the Title I grant, which the District receives based on its US Census poverty data. This revenue must be spent for low-income students. Another federal grant, Title III, provides additional resources for English Learners. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) provides additional funding for Special Education students. The District has also received about $1 billion in federal stimulus money as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment act of 2009 (ARRA). However, most of these funds were spent in the two previous fiscal years as mandated by law, leaving about $150 million to be spent this fiscal year. Therefore, we will not have stimulus money in the 2012-13 school year.
To see how LAUSD has spent its federal stimulus money, visit the Recovery.gov federal database using this shortened link: http://tinyurl.com/7ehx79u
Since 1972, there have been at least 20 bills, propositions and court decisions that impact the funding and revenue streams of local school districts. These have generally constrained LAUSD’s ability to raise funds independently of the State. For example, Proposition 13 limits property taxes to 1% of a property’s assessed value, and caps increases in assessed value at 2% annually of or the percentage growth in the Consumer Price Index, whichever was smaller. In addition, Proposition 13 requires that Parcel tax measures receive two-thirds voter approval. As part of Proposition 39 bond issues, the proceeds of which are usually limited to building programs, require a 55% vote for passage.
Click here to read about the District’s efforts to raise money from private donors.
LAUSD spends over 70 percent ($4.9 Billion) of the $6.3 billion General Fund on employee compensation.
Of the $4.9 billion spent on employee salaries and benefits:
- $2.7 billion is spent on certificated salaries
- $795 million is spent on classified salaries
- $1.4 billion is spent on providing benefits to certificated and classified employees and retirees
Note: Certificated employees are those who are required by the state to hold some type of teaching credentials, including most administrators and full-time, part-time, substitute, and temporary teachers. Classified employees are those who are not required to hold teaching credentials, such as bus drivers, secretaries, custodians, instructional aides, and some management personnel.
In addition to funding employee salaries and benefits, the General Fund provides $366 million for books and supplies, $811 million for other operating expenses and $44 million for capital outlays.
Other Outgo is primarily transfers between funds within the district as well as transfers of indirect costs between funds, and transfers to other agencies. Funds are transferred from the General Fund either to Capital Services Fund for debt service or to Cafeteria Fund and Child Development Fund for subsidy or support.
Since 1985, the California State Lottery Act has provided supplemental funding to California public education on all levels from kindergarten through the University of California plus several specialized schools. Each school district in California receives the same per pupil funding level from the lottery. These funds are paid out for each unit of average daily attendance (ADA), which is calculated by dividing the total number of days of student attendance by the number of days of school taught during the same period.
For Fiscal Year 2011-12, LAUSD is projected to receive $140 per unit of ADA in lottery revenue for a total of approximately $93 million. This amount makes up part of the District’s general fund budget. Lottery contributions can only be used for instructional purposes and cannot be used for the acquisition of property, the construction of facilities or the funding of research.
Frequently Asked Questions about Budget Reductions
Voters have approved $19.2 billion worth of bonds for new school construction and repairs to existing buildings. Can't the District use those funds to help with current budget crisis?
Unfortunately, no. By law, the District must use bond funds for construction and repair. It cannot be used to pay teachers or administrators, buy textbooks or offset general fund budget shortfalls. The Bond money must be used to improve our facilities and build new schools.
For more information, click here.
Restricted funding is funding that must be used for specific designated purposes that support and enhance the district’s base program. Examples include Title I, Title II, Title III, and Economic Impact Aid (EIA) grants, which support students from low-income households, English Learners, and professional development.
The available funds in each grant program are a combination of new revenue and unspent balances from the previous year. These grant programs have seen large decreases in available funds for the 2012-13 school year. Please see below for the reduction in available funds district-wide for each program:
See the following memorandum for more details: FY 2012-13 Categorical Programs