State recommends district undergo performance audit
To the Editor:
As many have noted, we should not approve a tax increase that many of our neighbors cannot afford in the midst of a deep recession with a still-uncertain outcome. Now, there is an additional reason to “Vote No” on Issue 69, the school tax levy.
Due to its “potential to incur a deficit during the first three years of the five-year period” [based on the district’s five-year forecast], the Ohio Department of Education has recommended the CH-UH City School District to the Auditor of State as one that should undergo a performance audit.
This will review the efficiency and effectiveness of operations and assets, and identify cost-saving options for the district. Voters should not approve additional funding increases until the district has addressed structural deficits.
The Ohio Auditor of State recently outlined more than $7 million in potential savings for the South Euclid-Lyndhurst school district in its 2019 performance audit.
I was among a group of local citizens who reviewed the CH-UH schools’ financial statements, identified the extraordinary employee-benefits-cost outlier and brought it to the attention of the school board and the community. Others have pointed to questions about the sale and disposition of district buildings. We think it is likely the performance audit can identify other significant savings. I have suggested that it is time to consider strategic alternatives.
I have signed up to tutor with Reaching Heights, and encourage others to do the same. Those of us with means can support the school foundation. I believe our schools are already very well-funded compared to similar districts, and accolades such as the AP Honors achievements show they deserve to be supported. But, we need to balance school funding with the needs of the community.