District to Run Enrichment Levy
District to Ask Voters to Renew Enrichment Levy Funding
No Projected Rate Increase in the February Levy Renewal Package
Over the years, the Selah School District has valued the support of its community. This has been even more appreciated in the past nine pandemic months.
With the continual backing of patrons, the District has cultivated a culture of life-long learning. Through the passage of Facilities Bonds to construct new buildings, and the approval of levies that support student learning, the District provides an equitable and quality educational experience that parents and patrons have come to expect.
Now, again, the District is turning to the Selah community to "renew" its commitment to students and education as the School Board of Directors has announced that it will submit to voters a two-year Enrichment Levy request on the February 9, 2021, ballot. This request is not a new tax, but a renewal of the levy funds currently being collected to support programs and that will expire in December of 2021.
The projected collection rate per thousand for each of the two Levy years, 2022, and 2023, is $1.55. Further, the Selah School Board has recommended to certify the 2021 collection rate at a lesser amount than what voters approved in 2019, in order to drive a projected rate of 1.55 per $1,000 for the proposed 2022 and 2023 collection years. Also, if passed, the District will continue to receive important Levy Equalization funding, projected at approximately $3 million per year. If approved, local levy funds and Levy Equalization funding together comprise approximately 12% of the District’s operating budget through December of 2023.
Enrichment Levy funding generated is needed to help support valuable programs essential to student learning. In Selah, if approved, Levy dollars would continue to support and enhance three main areas: Student Learning Support, Technology and Co-Curricular Activities. Specifically, Levy funding provides the District with professional development opportunities for staff, additional certified staff at the secondary level, classified staffing for supervision and intervention, staffing support for additional program offerings, instructional materials, technology—including devices and support, nursing support, campus safety and security, athletics and activities, highly capable program support, and ELL support, to name a few items.
Throughout this last year, Enrichment Levy funds approved in 2019, have been valuable to students and families. Technology services and 1:1 devices have kept students connected to learning, teachers, and school whether it be during remote or hybrid instruction, available instructional materials necessary, nursing services have been imperative, professional development opportunities essential, program support needed, and additional staffing important in order to meet students’ varying needs. Now, as Selah students have begun to transition back-to-school for on-campus instruction, the need to prepare for and secure levy funding for the future is necessary.
According to Superintendent, Shane Backlund, the renewal of February’s Enrichment Levy will help maintain existing student learning opportunities and programs the community expects.
“I want to thank our families and patrons. Our District values the support it receives from the Selah community,” said Backlund. “With continued support, we have been able to provide a stable educational environment for students where they can learn, grow, and succeed. As we continue to navigate unprecedented times, while preparing for future years, the renewal of levy funding is essential to the District’s purpose so it can continue providing tomorrow’s leaders with the equitable and high-quality learning programs and opportunities they deserve, where they are prepared for college and career opportunities.”