Humble ISD’s budget workshop Tuesday, May 20, aimed to keep the Humble ISD family whole and addressed the expected growth of the district and the cost of doing business as the district moves forward. Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Fagen opened the budget workshop segment of the meeting sharing that the 7% raise Humble ISD was able to give to its teachers is thanks to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s House Bill 3. According to Fagen, other employees also received raises between 4-7%. 

“However,” as Fagen stated, “the impact of coronavirus on the Texas economy is something that we are all paying attention to right now, and making sure that as we move through fiscal year ‘21, which is next year, that we are keeping a watchful eye on fiscal years ‘22 and ‘23, as preliminary data are showing a significant decrease in tax revenues to the state as well as an oil situation. Those two things together are something that could have an impact on our budget.”

Fagen explained to the board that there is a positive culture in the district that is hoped to be maintained as the board discusses the budget for the upcoming years. 

“At the same time,” Fagen said, “we have to make sure that we are paying attention to the student growth within the district. The recent PASA study showed that we have a great problem in Humble ISD and that is families want to live here and want their children in our schools, so we continue to grow. One of the goals will be to fund the growth of the students and the teachers they will need.”

According to the data presented to the school board, student growth for year 2020-2021 is projected to increase to over 46,000 students, an increase of over 1,000 students. That trend is projected to continue through year 2021-2022 with projections being more than 47,000 students. 

Special education was also addressed. Fagen pointed out the shift in the state’s approach to special education, which has subsequently shown an increase in Humble ISD according to Fagen. “We are projecting approximately 50,000 more student minutes that we will serve next year,” she detailed, “and that equates to approximately 29 teachers.”

The final increase discussed was the opening of Centennial Elementary whose mascot will be the Centennial Express “celebrating the history of Humble ISD and the railroad.” 

The district’s highest priorities were presented as safety, quality data-driven leadership and personalized student success. Fagen stated the district is paying attention to these priorities and ensuring that there is forward progress in these areas. 

The budget capacity is $29.5 million; however, Humble ISD Chief Financial Officer Mike Steale shared that “in a normal year, our budget would increase by $16-$20 million; this year we’re going to propose an increase of $10-$11 million.” The current proposed budget would allow for $18.675 million capacity to be carried over. 

The next budget workshop is scheduled for Tuesday, June 2. The school board is scheduled to vote on the 2020-2021 budget on the evening of Tuesday, June 16.

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