The Cy-Fair ISD board of trustees approved the district’s annual budget May 14, and for the first time in about five years it does not include any reductions.
“Part of our goal was that the $46 million we made in cuts in 2011 was made so there would be no further reductions in 2012-13,” said Stuart Snow, associate superintendent for business and financial services.
From 2006 to 2011, CFISD cut its budget by about $120 million, due to the state’s school finance system, which does not account for student growth.
“We won’t sit here and tell you that four, five or six years down the road there won’t be any indications we cut $120 million out of the budget,” said Mark Henry, superintendent. “There will be ramifications, but we don’t know where they will be. You can’t cut $120 million out of an organization and not see changes.”
The 2012-13 $729 million budget includes an increased cost per student from $6,256 to $6,626. At the 2011-12 cost per student amount, CFISD is the lowest compared to neighboring school districts. To reach Klein ISD’s cost per student of $6,575, the district would have to add $35 million to its operating budget; it would have to add about $122 million annually to spend $7,368 per student as Tomball ISD does; and CFISD would need an additional $332 million to reach the $9,642 Austin ISD spends per student.
The budget also includes a 3 percent cost-of-living raise for all employees, deemed necessary by administrators for reasons such as increases in the consumer price index and the district’s health insurance premiums.
“We have also asked our employees—because of the budget cuts over the last several years—to do more and take on more duties and responsibilities,” Snow said. “We believe the increase is a reward for employees for past performance, because we do have a high level of student achievement, and we are the largest recognized district in the state.”
See Community Impact Newspaper’s June 15th edition for an in-depth look at the 2012-13 budget.