Planning for the 2024-25 Budget

When planning a budget, the first question is always: What matters to us? What do we want - and need - to invest in? At City Schools, the budget development process begins by asking you - our parents, students, and staff - these questions.

After extensive community feedback, City Schools is proud to present a budget that safeguards the strong foundation we have built and maintains major investments in all key priority areas.

Like many school systems across Maryland, developing the City Schools budget for the 2024-25 school year posed unique challenges. With the end of federally-provided COVID funding, minimal growth in year-over-year funding from the Blueprint for Maryland’s future, and escalating costs of commodities and consumer goods, there was significant potential for budget cuts.

Despite these challenges, and through a unified team effort, careful analysis, identification of priorities, strategic long-term financial planning, and a steadfast commitment to fiscal responsibility, City Schools’ FY25 proposed budget sustains all major investments, and positions the district for a successful 2024-25 school year.

Read more about the proposed budget below. The Board of School Commissioners is scheduled to vote on the proposed budget at their regularly scheduled Board meeting on May 15, 2024.

School-Level Priority Engagement Sessions

The Priority Engagement Session phase of the budget engagement process has now ended. Our schools collectively got over 8000 responses on school-level priorities. This was a combination of the school-level survey (3575) and the Possip poll (4714) that were conducted during the Priority Engagement window.  Thank you to all our stakeholders who took the time to have their voices heard in this important decision-making process for our schools.

School-Level Community Budget Forums

All schools will host at least one Community Budget Forum between now and March 1, 2024. The purpose of this forum is to provide the principal with an opportunity to share information about the proposed budget with their school community, answer general questions, and have an open and respectful sharing of views about how stakeholder input on priorities was incorporated into the development of the budget to best further the vision of the school. Check with your school leader for your school's session, or check this spreadsheet. Schools are not limited to the dates listed on the linked spreadsheet. They have the autonomy to host additional sessions to accommodate their stakeholders.

2023-2024 Budget

The Board of School Commissioners voted to adopt the district's 2023-24 operating budget during the May 9, 2023, public board meeting.

The budget was developed with active community participation. You can find an overview of the budget (including highlighted investments) and the total budget below.

Individual school budgets will be posted on each school's profile page.

Additional FY 23 financial documents:

Kirwan: Blueprint for Maryland's Future

At its heart, the Kirwan Blueprint for Maryland's Future (not to be confused with our own Blueprint for Success), is a comprehensive overhaul of education funding in the state designed to close equity gaps and improve the overall quality of education for all children. The goal is to begin to correct historical underfunding of educational resources, with particular attention to the needs of students from low-income families, English learners, and students with disabilities, and with funding for students who live in areas of concentrated poverty.

Kirwan is not a blank check. There are requirements, restrictions, and guidelines that must be followed. Later this month, we will release a draft of our first comprehensive local implementation plan, laid out as responses to a series of questions posed by the state, for public review and comment.

Learn more about Kirwan and City Schools.

ESSER (Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund)

Per-Pupil Expenditures

Recently, the Maryland State Department of Education added a new piece of information to their MD School Report website. You can now see how much each school and school district in the state spends per student. MSDE refers to this as per-pupil expenditures. This data can help you, and other stakeholders, better understand education funding.