The Atlanta Public Schools administration released their preliminary budget proposal for FY15. As always, the presentation represents a “numbers dump” with limited summary information. In fact, the budget document provided to the Board was over 150 pages of departmental detailed numbers and only had a one page summary (you can see the presentation here).
As a brief overview, revenues (which are not included in the chart below) are projected at $633 million as compared to $595 million in FY14 – an increase of $38 million or 6.4%. Accordingly, the current budget proposal is balanced with the use of $25 million in General Fund reserves.
In an effort to start the conversation going, below is a chart (click to enlarge) that presents the FY15 proposed expenditure budget in comparison to prior year expenditure budgets. The FY14 numbers represent the amended budget and FY12 and FY13 are actuals.
The format is one that I have used extensively and presents a summary by department, program or function. At this point, I am not offering any analysis, but will provide that in future posts. [Update – the chart below has been corrected – the previous version included the wrong data for FY15]
In advance of doing a detailed review, I think it is important to focus on the highlighted lines in the chart above that show the spending trends for certain departments.
It will also be useful to compare these trends with the enrollment trends in the chart below as they further place the expenditures in context of how the system is changing over time. Below is a chart with enrollment for FY12, FY13 and FY14 (these numbers are based on reports submitted by APS to the GA DOE in October of each year). In addition, the FY15 projections for the traditional schools were provided by APS. I estimated the charter school enrollment based on one conversion charter for next year, plus the opening of Atlanta Classical Academy and plus an estimate for enrollment expansion of existing charter schools. (click to enlarge).
In addition, it is also important to understand staffing levels to further place the expenditure activity in context. I am working on that and will publish it when complete.
[Follow me on Twitter @Financial_Decon]