How increased district spending will benefit students

How increased district spending will benefit students
Posted on 08/02/2022

Tahoma School District’s general fund expenditures are projected at $161.36 million in 2022-23 (see the full budget), a 13.2% increase from 2021-22. This is attributed to some added personnel, wage increases, inflation costs, necessary facilities upgrades, and teacher training and instruction materials. For every dollar that Tahoma spends, approximately 90 cents goes toward staff and classroom materials that benefit students.


This page provides information about many of the critical education programs/personnel that will not only support recovery learning, but are also enhancing the education of all Tahoma students to prepare them for Future Ready lives after graduation. Many of the programs and staff listed below are either not funded, or not fully funded, by state and federal dollars, and are significantly supported by your local levy investment.

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Teacher Professional Development


Teacher professional development, such as Early Literacy Learning, provides teachers with the latest research on youth development. By equipping teachers with cutting edge research about students’ learning capabilities, they will be able to provide stronger core instruction and create equitable learning spaces where high expectations are held for all students.


In addition to research-based teaching, we are expanding crucial collaborative time for teachers and administrators on early release Fridays and a pair of teacher workshop days during the academic year. This model, known as PLC+ (Professional Learning Community), will drive teachers to understand and better address student challenges, strengthen instructional practice, share ideas with colleagues, and ultimately, improve outcomes for all students.

Updated math curriculum


To provide Tahoma students access to top-tier classroom resources, the district occasionally updates its curriculum. This year, the district is adopting a new math curriculum for all elementary students to provide instruction that models up-to-date learning research.


Student physical and mental health resources


Many of our students need physical and mental health support at school, in addition to their academic instruction. Tahoma added part-time and contract nurses to support during COVID-19, and continues to have at least one full-time nurse at all nine district schools. The district also has 6 elementary counselors, 6 middle school counselors and 6 high school counselors. There are 4 student Wellness Advocates who focus on providing one-on-one support for students and connecting them to wellness resources when they need it, which has expanded to both middle schools and Tahoma High School. The Wellness Advocates (SBIRT coordinators) are half-funded by local levy dollars, and half-funded by a King Co. grant.

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Reading and math assistance for elementary students


There are approx. 800 elementary students who utilize the Math Assistance Program (MAP) and/or Reading Assistance Program (RAP) at their school. Additional paraprofessionals will support the increasing need to work closely with students in these programs.


Special services and behavioral support staff


More students who receive Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) through Tahoma’s Special Services Dept. are in need of specialized behavioral support. By expanding support staff to provide that necessary direct instruction, students will continue to have access to public education in our community.


In addition to support staff, the district also utilizes Technology Levy funds to provide student tech for communication. Some students use apps to signal their emotions, needs, and to have conversations with peers and staff. The costs for this technology, and the staff training to support, continue to grow as we aim to provide voice for all students.

 


CLICK HERE for 4 things you should know about the 2022-23 adopted budget, including recovery learning information and more. Need a guide to understanding the budget? Check out Budget 101 HERE!

Do you have additional budget questions and how these programs can benefit your student? Send us an email at [email protected]. Thank you for your continued partnership!
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