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Moorhead School Board approves budget for 2017-18

July 20, 2017

During the June 26 meeting, the Moorhead School Board approved the district’s annual operating plan, which includes the preliminary budget for the 2017-18 school year. General fund revenues are projected at $77.4 million with expenses projected to be $80.6 million.

The district’s revenues for 2017-18 will increase primarily because of a 2 percent increase to the general education aid formula and an estimated increase in student enrollment of more than 200 students, said Brandon Lunak, assistant superintendent of finance and operations.

Expenditures are increasing as the district continues to address the operating levy priorities and prepares to open two schools this fall. The primary reasons for the increase are the addition of approximately 18 full-time equivalent teaching and support staff positions; the addition of Vista Center for Education and the district operations center; and the opening of Dorothy Dodds Elementary School and Horizon Middle School West Campus. Additionally, two school buses will be purchased in 2017-18 to continue upgrading the district’s bus fleet.

In November 2016, district residents approved an operating levy renewal that will provide $223.66 per pupil in voter-approved funding each year for the next 10 years beginning with the 2018-19 school year.

Revenue from renewal of the operating levy will address these five priority areas identified by the School Board: support learning and operate our new and existing schools for our growing student enrollment; maintain average class sizes; provide a source of stable and predictable revenue to avoid reductions; maintain and replace technology equipment; and maintain access to education programs including world languages and early childhood.

Ninety-nine percent of Minnesota school districts use operating levy funding. Statewide the average operating levy authority is $1,187 per pupil. Moorhead Area Public Schools is below the state average at $947.66 per pupil — of which $223.66 is voter-approved and $724 is board approved. The operating levy generates approximately $1.5 million for the school district.

The result of the recommended budget is a fund balance decrease of $3.2 million for 2017-18. The fund balance is projected to be 18.79 percent of total expenditures. This falls below 25 percent, which is the target fund balance required in School Board policy.

The board was provided with projections for the next three years. Assuming no increases in revenue from the state, the district’s expenditures are projected to exceed revenue by approximately $1.5 million for fiscal year 2019, by $2.5 million for fiscal year 2020 and by $3.7 million for fiscal year 2021.

Lunak also reviewed the preliminary staffing plan, enrollment projections, and food service, community service, debt service, and building construction funds. A revised budget will be presented to the board in January 2018.

The food service fund is on budget for 2017-18. Elementary meal price will increase to $2.30 this year to be compliant with federal requirements. A separate fund was established to track revenues and expenditures for the construction work that received voter approval in November 2015. Total expenditures on the projects are at $74.8 million. Construction is underway on the new K-4 Dorothy Dodds Elementary School and the grades 5-6 Horizon Middle School West Campus. Remodeling is underway this summer at the three existing elementary schools.

Categorized under: School

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Candidate filing opens Aug. 1 for Moorhead School Board

July 18, 2017

Candidates may begin filing affidavits of candidacy for the office of Moorhead School Board member on Tuesday, Aug. 1. The two-week candidate filing period closes at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 15. In the Nov. 7 special election, one resident will be elected to a one-year term to fulfill an unexpired board term. Read More

Horizon Middle School helps kick off United Way School Supply Drive to support area students

July 13, 2017


With backpacks and school supplies displayed nearby, Principal Jeremy Larson of Horizon Middle School and Principal John Nelson of Fargo’s Ben Franklin Middle School helped the United Way of Cass-Clay kick off this year’s School Supply Drive July 11 at Horizon Middle School East Campus. The drive runs from July 11-28. Backpacks and supplies will be distributed Aug. 5 and 8. Read More

Moorhead Schools Legacy Foundation PB&J School Lunch Fundraiser July 22

July 11, 2017

Support Moorhead Schools Legacy Foundation’s Food For Thought program, which helps fund milk/snack and meals for students in need, at the PB&J School Lunch Fundraiser. Read More

Moorhead team competes at DI Global Finals

June 28, 2017


A Moorhead Destination Imagination team advanced to Global Finals last month after qualifying at the 2017 Minnesota Affiliate Destination Imagination Tournament. Additionally, the four Moorhead students received the DIstinguished Leader Award at the 2017 state tournament. Read More

Moorhead Community Education and FMCT present “Legally Blonde The Musical, JR.” June 28 and 29

June 27, 2017

Moorhead Community Education and the Fargo-Moorhead Community Theater present “Legally Blonde The Musical, JR.” Performances are at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 28 and Thursday, June 29 in the Moorhead High School auditorium. For ticket information visit or call the FMCT Box Office at 701-235-6778. Read More

Moorhead High business teacher one of nine employees to retire this year

June 23, 2017


Mary Flesberg is proud to to have been a Moorhead High School teacher who has taught more than 17,000 students. Flesberg and eight other employees retired from Moorhead Area Public Schools this year. Read More

District finalizes purchase of Muscatell Super Center for new transportation building

June 19, 2017

The Moorhead School Board approved the purchase of Ward Muscatell Super Center at 1313 30th Ave. S., Moorhead, for a new transportation and operations center for the district. Read More

Moorhead Area Public Schools provides free summer meals for youth

June 6, 2017


Moorhead Area Public Schools is participating in the Summer Food Service Program for 2017. Meals will be provided to all children in the Moorhead area, ages 1-18, free of charge. Children may eat at any site. Read More

Moorhead High Class of 2017 graduates June 4

June 4, 2017


The Moorhead High School Class of 2017 graduated June 4 during commencement at Minnesota State University Moorhead’s Nemzek Hall. Read More

Durbin draws from history for his young adult novels

June 1, 2017


Author William Durbin models the characters in his novels after real people. Durbin described the research he does for his historical novels to Horizon Middle School sixth-grade students during presentations earlier this year. 

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