The Rochester CUSD #3a Board of Education held its regular meeting on Wednesday, December 21, 2022. A highlight from the meeting was student achievement and growth data in reading and math. Fall benchmark assessments reflect that elementary and intermediate school students learning growth is at expected rates and in many cases higher than expected rates as compared to pre-pandemic learning data from 2019. When reviewing state assessment data all schools are growing at expected or higher than expected rates. Rochester elementary, intermediate, and junior high schools all received commendable ratings while Rochester High School achieved exemplary status. “The work of our students, staff, principals, and families is to be commended,” said Superintendent Dan Cox. “To achieve expected and higher than expected rates of growth during the most challenging times we have seen in education over recent years is incredible. We have invested heavily in staff and resources in recent years and it shows. Our students are benefiting greatly,” Cox added.
The Board approved a resolution of intent to issue alternate bonds for school facilities projects. The purpose of the bonds is to provide revenue to complete facility improvements at Rochester High School by renovating the 1959 wing including a remodel of science labs and adding a secure entrance. Another portion of the project is renovations and additions to the outdoor multi-use academic, extra-curricular, and co-curricular facilities at Rochester High School. The bonds are issued and paid through the 1% County Schools Facilities Sales Tax and will not raise property taxes.
For the third consecutive year, the Board approved a resolution to abate property taxes by $300,000. The abatement is funded by the 1% County Schools Facilities Sales Tax. In addition to providing property tax relief, the Board approved the annual tax levy. It is important to note that the Board does not control or set the tax rate during the levy. Instead, the Board requests the amount of revenue the District is entitled to receive through the levy. Because new construction and Equalized Assessed Valuation figures are only estimated at the time of the levy, the Board requests a higher rate so as collect the correct amount when figures are finalized in the spring.
Other discussion and action items included the introduction of District architects and construction managers, policy review, and the annual audit and financial report. To learn more see the full summary of minutes here.
The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Education will be held on Wednesday, January 18, 2023, at 6:30 p.m.