Wyoming School Districts Urge Lawmakers To Reconsider Cuts

May 4, 2016

  

A group of Wyoming school districts is requesting to meet with lawmakers this summer to resolve concerns about funding.

In March, the Legislature passed a budget cutting $36 million in K-12 funding over the next two years. That’s a cut of more than one percent.

The decrease was taken out of an adjustment for inflation known as the ‘external cost adjustment.’

Campbell County Superintendent Boyd Brown is one of 28 superintendents who signed a letter asking to be allowed to make their case before the Joint Education Interim Committee.

“We’re asking to be put on the agenda at their June 13 and 14 meeting, and have an opportunity to talk about the cuts and the funding model,” Brown says.

Brown says the state’s school funding model is already designed to adjust funding levels based on districts’ needs, and an across-the-board cut to the inflation adjustment violates that model.

“It automatically adjusts for the number of kids and the amount that they allow us to have in each district,” says Brown. “With doing an arbitrary 1 or 1.4 percent cut, it just is not equitable across all districts. It really doesn’t treat districts the same.”

Brown says school districts count on that external cost adjustment when budgeting.

The 11 districts that are part of a coalition to restore full school funding claim that more than 90 jobs will be eliminated this year due to the budget reductions.