Board holds tax rates steady for FY2020
Board members voted unanimously Thursday night to hold the district’s tax rates steady, keeping revenues roughly the same as expenses continue to rise.
Though state law allows school boards to increase local tax rates annually to provide up to 4 percent more revenue over the previous year, board members opted to maintain the county’s tax rate of 53.8 cents per $100 of assessed real estate and tangible property.
Because the overall assessment of property in McCracken County increased by about $140 million this year, keeping the tax rate at last year’s level will generate an additional $225,000 in revenue for the general fund.
The board also voted to maintain the district’s motor vehicle and watercraft tax rate at 52.9 cents per $100 of assessed property, the same rate the district’s maintained since at least 1993.
Assistant Superintendent Johnna DeJarnett noted that of the 14 districts in Kentucky that either neighbor McCracken or are of similar size (5,000 to 10,000 students), McCracken maintains the 6th lowest tax rate, 2nd highest average teacher salary, and 3rd highest average ACT composite score as of 2017-18, the most recent school year for which official data is available.
“I think it shows that our district is very efficient, spends money well, and does a lot with the resources we have,” DeJarnett said. “We continue to add programs for kids, and that’s the number one priority, keeping our kids safe and giving them every opportunity that we can.”
High school posts impressive AP passage rates
Assistant Superintendent Michael Ceglinski reported to board members Thursday night that McCracken County High School’s Advanced Placement (AP) passage rates have once again improved and exceeded state averages.
In 2018-19, MCHS students took 547 AP tests across 20 subject areas, earning a passing score (a 3 out of 5) on 331 tests, or a passage rate of 60.5 percent. Students in 14 of the 20 subject areas had passage rates well above state averages.
Board approves changes to district sick leave policies
Following a second reading Thursday night of proposed policy changes, board members approved to extend family illness/mourning allowances for employees to include leave for illness or death of brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law.