Albemarle County School Board Approves Balanced Budget for Fiscal Year 2024-25

Albemarle County School Board Approves Balanced Budget for Fiscal Year 2024-25


(ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Virginia)—During its meeting on April 25, 2024, the Albemarle County School Board adopted a final operating budget for the 2024-25 school year of $269.4 million, an increase of $9.5 million, or 3.6%, over the current fiscal year. Compared to the School Board’s Funding Request of $272.9 million approved on March 14, the adopted budget reflects a $9.8 million increase in revenues and a $3.5 million decrease in expenditures, which closed the $13.3 million funding gap.

The adopted budget prioritizes maintaining current levels of service by offering a competitive and equitable compensation program; meeting the growing needs of English Learners and students with disabilities; ensuring ongoing and equitable student access to social emotional supports; and serving the academic needs of the most at-risk learners.

“As we chart our course for the upcoming year with this budget, our primary aim remains the continuity and enhancement of our existing initiatives,” School Board Chair Judy Le said in a letter to the Board of Supervisors. “Rather than initiating new endeavors, our focus lies in sustaining and fortifying the programs that have proven effective in nurturing student growth and achievement,” she said.

The adopted budget:

  • Increases pay for all employees by 3% and provides for increases in the Academic Leadership Compensation Program.
  • Adds five full-time equivalent (FTE) positions to the English Learner program and another five FTEs to Special Education in response to enrollment growth and the shifting needs of English Learners and students with disabilities.
  • Absorbs the cost, following the lapse of federal American Rescue Plan funding, to maintain current social emotional supports and upgrade to a differentiated staffing model that will allow Albemarle County Public Schools to provide additional social emotional resources to schools based on need.
  • Sustains the current level of direct intervention support provided to students by reading specialists and reading and math interventionists following the loss of federal funding for 10 intervention positions.

These proposals to maintain current levels of service increase the division’s operating budget by $10.7 million year over year, an increase offset by a series of reductions that generated about $3.5 million in savings. Reductions included:

  • Deferring the replacement cycle for one year for K-2 iPads and deferring the annual transfer to the vehicle replacement fund, a savings of $900,000;
  • Implementing a hiring freeze for vacant positions, including $500,000 in savings within Central Office and departments, reducing vacant positions in the Foreign Language in Elementary Schools (FLES) program for a savings of $250,000, and saving $200,000 by eliminating the division’s assistant principal intern program; and
  • Increasing student-to-teacher budgeted ratios by 0.5, resulting in a savings of $1.6 million.

Another key component in the division’s ability to adopt a balanced budget was an increase in proposed revenues for the 2024-25 fiscal year. While the biggest boost came from the state, with projected revenues increasing by $4.8 million since the School Board’s Funding Request was approved in mid-March, it’s important to note that total funding from the state is still anticipated to be about $3.2 million less than in the current fiscal year—a 4.5% decrease in year-to-year state funding. The adopted budget also includes an increase of $2.9 million in the local transfer since mid-March, based on the county’s proposed budget, which includes an increase in local taxes. With other local sources, that increase brings total local revenues to $199.4 million—an increase of 7.5% over the current year.

Budget adoption is the culmination of a budget cycle that began in September 2023 and follows the presentation of the Draft Funding Request in February 2024, two work sessions, a public hearing, the presentation and approval of the School Board’s Funding Request in March, and a series of budget updates to the school board. More information about the budget, including budget materials and presentations, is available on the division’s 2024-25 Budget Development web page.

CONTACT: Helen Dunn, Public Affairs and Strategic Communications Officer
PHONE: 434-249-8379