Capital funding, facilities on work session agenda

Capital funding data and the division’s long-term facilities master plan will be discussed at today’s Shenandoah County Public Schools work session.

School Board Chairwoman Karen Whetzel said the long-term facilities master plan consultants Tracey Richter, CEO of DeJong-Richter, and Mike Ross, of HBA Architecture, will be present to answer any questions the board has about the master plan.

“We will have the opportunity to review their recommendation and to ask any final questions of them regarding their recommendation,” she said. “Board members will most likely reflect on what we think about the recommendation now that we’ve had the report to review for several months and have had work sessions to learn more about it.”

In regard to the capital funding data, Whetzel said the board will be looking at capital funding from a historical perspective, as well as reviewing current capital needs.

Each year the Virginia Department of Education publishes a report that uses a set of standard metrics for financials that are specific to school accounting best practices, said Superintendent Mark Johnston. This allows for comparisons between the commonwealth’s school divisions.

“Staff has extracted capital improvement expenditure data from that report for 2015, the most recent year available, to compare us with our surrounding eight divisions we have identified as our comparable divisions,” Johnston said. “Because like some other divisions, part of our capital expenditures are included in county expenditures so they don’t show up in the state report. We’ve also taken the additional step to try to show totals for the divisions.”

“Staff felt that this information would provide a more accurate set of data for comparison purposes,” he added.

The work session will be held at 5:30 p.m. today in the Shenandoah County Board Room.

Contact staff writer Kaley Toy at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or