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Crosby Superintendent unveils district’s finances

Crosby ISD Superintendent Scott Davis

CROSBY – The status of Crosby ISD in recovery from the state of financial exegency was recently revealed by Superintendent Dr. Scott Davis.

“The With the adoption of the fiscal year 2020 audit, Crosby ISD now sits at the TEA minimum recommendation for fund balance totals. TEA recommends an unassigned fund balance of 15% of the current year’s expenditure budget. Crosby’s unassigned fund balance is now sitting at 19.78% of our 2020-2021 expenditure budget. TEA also recommends a total fund balance of 25% of the current year’s expenditure budget. Crosby’s total fund balance now sits at 26.42% of the 2020- 2021 expenditure budget. The conservative budget approach and goal of living within our means has, in concert with assistance from HB3 funding, come together with the collective will of the school board and staff to get us to this positive and healthy financial position.”

Some questioned how the school’s audit might come out this year, Davis addressed this also.

“The 2020 audit had no findings, errors, or concern with the financial position of Crosby ISD. This now finds Crosby ISD with two years of positive and improving audits. Recent conversations with bond rating agencies and bond disclosure groups also find that the finance world agrees with the positive financial improvement and position with changes from negative outlooks to positive outlooks as Crosby ISD seeks to refund bonds in an effort to save over $15 million in interest over the life of the bonds.”

This school year has been especially challenging for most school district to maintain enrollment and keep up with changing pandemic requirements.

“Despite the challenges of education in a COVID environment, Crosby ISD has only seen a decrease of 1.6% in enrollment from this time last school year. We still have 6331 students attending Crosby ISD. The majority of that decrease can be found in parents of Pre-K and Kindergarten students whose parents have chosen to keep their students at home for one more year while we all learn to live with COVID in our society. We have also seen our numbers of face-to-face students grow from 39% to 58% from the first nine weeks to the second nine weeks. Our health, safety, and cleaning efforts have helped Crosby ISD keep our active COVID cases low after an initial rise when we all came back to face-to-face. Honestly, that was to be expected as everyone had largely been apart since Spring Break last school year. Now, we are working to maintain academic rigor and contact with our students in both instructional settings. Our parents and staff have worked together well to navigate these uncharted territories with remote instruction. Our first nine-week failure rates for students did increase from the same grading periods in 2019-2020, but our teachers are tirelessly working to reach out to students in remote settings to help them succeed. As an educator for 28 years, it will always be better for the majority of students to attend school face-to-face with teachers whenever that is possible and practical. I respect parents’ decisions to keep kids home during this pandemic, but whenever possible, it is more productive for the majority of students to come to campuses.”

Davis had a word for his fellow workers in the school district.

“I am most proud of our teachers and other support staff. Truly, these last months have been something out of our wildest imaginations! While we used to only speak of grit, determination, and perseverance, our amazing district employees now display those traits on a daily basis. We are humbled to work for those heroes and support them as they continue to make positive differences in the lives of our wonderful students. This is why Crosby ISD exists. We absolutely had to address the financial problems, but now that those difficulties have been addressed and we are moving positively forward. We can re-engage the lion’s share of the focus to moving Crosby ISD into the future with confidence and great possibility.”