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D. 202 final FY20 operating budget shows up to $2.4m surplus

The 2019-20 District 202 operating budget is expected to show a surplus of up to $2.4 million based on current revenue projections.

The Plainfield District 202 Board of Education approved the FY 2020 budget at its August 19, 2019 regular meeting following a public hearing as required by law.

The approved FY 2020 budget will allow District 202 to maintain high-quality educational programs while continuing to develop and implement a responsible, sustainable financial plan, said Rick Engstrom, assistant superintendent for business and operations.

Engstrom said the proposed fiscal plan also:

  • keeps property taxes as low as possible
  • is balanced
  • maintains “Recognition” status (the highest possible ranking) on the State Board of Education’s Financial Profile.

District 202 earned “Watch” status in 2012 – the lowest state ranking – but reached the highest status, “Recognition” in 2016. It has enjoyed Recognition status ever since. District 202 scored a “3.9” out of a possible “4” in 2018, the most current year.


District 202’s total approved 2019-20 budget including debt service and capital projects is $325.9 million, up from $311.6 million last year, or 4.5 percent. Total revenues are expected to be $327.7 million in 2019-20, up from $313.6 last year, or 4.5 percent.

The operating budget pays for all daily operating expenses including salaries and benefits, which comprise about 79 percent of the Operating Budget this year.

The 2019-20 operating budget as approved shows $276 million in anticipated revenues, down from $283.5 million last year.

The preliminary proposed 2019-20 operating budget shows $273.6 million in expected expenses, down from $275.9 million last year.

The State of Illinois considers the Education, Operations and Maintenance, Transportation, Working Cash, IMRF and Tort funds together as the “Operating Budget” to assess and rate school districts’ financial health.


As usual, salaries and benefits comprise about 79 percent of the approved 2019-20 operating expenses. Salaries and benefits are expected to total about $227.5 million, which is up about 5.4 percent, or $11.7 million, over 2018-19 figure of $215.8.

The budget includes:

  • 3 percent raises for administration and non-union support staff;
  • raises averaging 2.75 percent plus a .5 percent increase to their base pay for Association of Plainfield Teachers (APT) members;
  • raises averaging 4.5 percent for Plainfield Association of Support Staff (PASS) members per the new five-year contract approved in April 2019;
  • 2 percent increases in benefits.

The final 2019-20 budget includes 30 new staff positions including 20 new social workers. School-level funding will not change, and departmental initiatives will be fully funded.

As well, the fiscal plan includes $4.6 million for assorted capital projects and $2.8 million for additional technology initiatives and equipment.

The final budget also includes a $1 million contingency for building-specific enrollment changes and special education needs, as has been done the last several years.

Finally, District 202 operates more efficiently than the state average in nearly every category:

  • Instructional spending per student -- $6,044 versus the state average of $8,024
  • Operational spending per student -- $9,895 versus the state average of $13,894
  • Pupil to Elementary Teacher Ratio – 19 students to every teacher, the same as the state average
  • Pupil to High School Teacher Ratio – 24 students to every teacher versus the state average of 19 students
  • Administrator to Student Ratio – 192 students to every administrator versus the state average of 181



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