FD school board approves instructional support levy

The Fort Dodge Community School District board approved Monday continuing its instructional support levy for another five years.

The board-approved levy uses local tax dollars for educational programming and other general fund expenditures, according to Brandon Hansel, FDCSD director of financial services.

No one from the Fort Dodge community attended the meeting and no comments were received by the board. The board did not have any questions for Hansel.

“This is the second part of our two-step process to renew our participation in the state instructional support program,” Hansel said Monday. “We’ve had this for about 10 years in the district and it brings in about $1.2 million annually for our general fund.”

The optional levy allows local school boards to levy up to 10 percent of the regular program district costs, which is the number of students times the state cost per pupil, Hansel said.

The levy has been set at 8 percent of the regular program district costs for the last several years. The board Monday did not increase the levy, only renewed it.

According to Hansel, the instructional support levy is part of the total school district tax levy, along with the Physical Plant and Equipment Levy. For the next fiscal year, the total levy will be $15.45 per $1,000 valuation. The ISL, Hansel said, represents approximately 71 and a half cents of that amount.

The levy is built into the district’s yearly budget.

Stuart Cochrane, FDCSD board president, said approving the levy feels good.

“We use that instructional support levy to fund so much of our instruction,” he said. “Unlike PPEL, which goes to finance and equipment and facilities, this is really our instructional piece that finances all of our curriculum, our textbooks, et cetera. Just being able to renew that is a very beneficial thing for the district.”