OKLAHOMA CITY—The Oklahoma State Board of Education approved the reallocation of $3.4 million to the Support of Public Activities, according to a release on the OSDE’s website last week.
The money comes after $40.2 million was returned to the OSDE as part of the surplus of money the state had after deep cuts to the budget in Fiscal Year 2016, which ended up being too deep.
The total appropriation to the Support of Public School Activities, also known as the Public School Activities Fund, was reduced by $13.8 million by two state revenue shortfalls in December 2015 and March 2016.
The fund is tied to several initiatives in schools, including professional development, AP teacher training, Early Intervention Sooner Start and fee assistance, according to the release. The funds will be returned proportionally from where they were taken.
The detailed breakdown of the Public School Activities funding return is as follows:
• Staff Development: $784,930.69
• AP Teacher Training/Test Fee Assistance: $636,110.50
• Early Intervention Sooner Start: $605,639.49
• Alt ED-State wide school programs: $576,630.79
• Early Childhood Initiative: $441,063.40
• Teacher for America: $105,014.77
• Oklahoma Student Information System: $77,538.57
• Great Expectations: $46,922.14
• Teacher Leader Effectiveness: $42,058.97
• Oklahoma Arts Institute: $14,703.68
• Teacher Residency Program: $10,515.58
• Street School: $8,413.14
• Personal Financial Literacy: $6,300.62
• Standards Implementation: $2,696.91
The funding return comes in the wake of budget woes for Oklahoma school districts. Ardmore City Schools director of finance Kelly Shannon said during the ACS Sept. 20 regular meeting that the district will be seeing some of the returned money in the upcoming month.
“On Oct. 13, I believe we will be receiving $119,609,” Shannon said. “That was a good positive. Though we’re still down around $1,000 from last year even after that.”
Shannon discussed the funds while addressing an increase in the projected General Funds carryover of about $200,000.
Shannon said after speaking with colleagues and other sources she determined it may be best to “hold back” the $119,000 for a potential mid-year cut, which she said she originally estimated a cut of $170,000. Shannon said she lowered that projected cut to $119,000, which added another $60,000 to the projected General Fund carryover.