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Western Placer school board approves $75 million budget

District receives hundreds of school name suggestions
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BY STEVE ARCHER

OF THE LINCOLN NEWS MESSENGER

Western Placer Unified School District’s board of trustees unanimously approved a $75-million budget Tuesday night.

The budget does not include any changes from the recently adopted state budget, which is awaiting approval from Gov. Jerry Brown, according to Audrey Kilpatrick, the school district’s assistant superintendent of business and operations.

“We’ve picked up additional state and federal revenue,” Kilpatrick said. “We’ve also seen a dip in developers’ fees payments; they’ve trickled off. Hopefully, in the spring, developers will start pulling more permits.”

The district had $75,034,905 in revenues and $75,237,557 in expenditures for a net deficit of $226,012. The district’s largest revenue source was from average daily attendance funds, which resulted in $57,052,073. The district’s largest expenditure was more than $32 million in certificated salaries followed by more than $18 million in benefits.

Kilpatrick estimated the district will have an ending fund balance of $3.6 million on June 30.

Naming new schools

Lincoln residents turned in hundreds of school name and mascot suggestions for two proposed new schools, an elementary school and a high school. Many residents suggested the elementary school be named after Sawyer Orion Rummelhart, a 9-year-old boy who died of cancer in 2016.

The overwhelming favorite name for the high school was Twelve Bridges followed by Charles Wilson, Charles Gladding, Spring Valley and Theodore Judah. Judah and Wilson were key figures in the founding of Lincoln, Gladding founded Gladding, McBean clay works and Spring Valley was the name of a ranch that formerly occupied the Twelve Bridges neighborhood.

Superintendent Scott Leaman said the list was for discussion only Tuesday night.

“It would be nice for all of us to get together and clean up the list,” said Leaman, who suggested a special meeting on July 3.

Trustee Brian Haley, clerk of the board, said he was impressed with the lists.

“These are very creative,” Haley said. “People are not shy.”

Grand jury report on school safety

The district’s board of trustees received a copy of the Placer County Grand Jury’s report on Emergency Preparedness-Placer County Schools. The board of trustees has 90 days to respond to the report.

The grand jury identified three possible hazards likely to impact Placer County schools: train derailment, release of hazardous materials and wildfires. The grand jury visited Roseville High School, Lincoln High School and Foresthill High School. The California Department of Education requires all schools to maintain a school safety plan consistent with state emergency management system guidelines, according to the report.

There are 16 school districts in Placer County and all are responsible for their own safety plan.

Included among the grand jury’s findings were that emergency management plans were not consistent among the schools in the county; school safety plans at the schools visited all had different names, which might lead to confusion; there is no central county oversight regarding spending school funds for emergency preparedness; and substitute teachers receive inconsistent information about responding to emergencies.

Among the recommendations made by the grand jury were that superintendents and principals meet to discuss emergency preparedness planning; school districts consider hiring a permanent school safety officer, in addition to school resource officers; and all superintendents share information on their communications systems at the Placer County Office of Education quarterly safety meetings.