Important Budget Discussion

Dear Lafayette Families,

The Home & School Association, funded exclusively by parents, staff and friends of the school, pays for a wide variety of programs and school support, such as Lafayette Gives Back, the Peace Program and art supplies. These programs all rely on contributions from parents, as well as the income from HSA-organized events such as the auction and fall festival. Because of lower membership donations this year, the HSA is facing a budget shortfall which will be the focus of our upcoming General Meeting on February 8th. We need to decide how to address the resulting deficit for the remainder of 2017-18 school year and we face difficult choices as we think about our budget for 2018-19.


This year’s operating budget, outlined here in detail, is $342,500 and is funded through membership donations and fundraising events.[1]Thus far in the 2017-18 school year, the HSA has received approximately $82,000 in membership donations towards our goal of $150,000, we are $68,000 short of our goal. (In comparison, families contributed $144,000 in membership donations in 2016-17 and $154,000 in 2015-16.)  Because of this decline, the HSA board now projects a negative net cash flow of $68,000 for the 2017-2018 year.

We propose four options for your consideration and ask that you plan to attend the February 8th General Meeting to discuss and cast your vote.

1. Raise additional funds. We can seek increased membership donations through an additional targeted fundraising campaign.

2. Supplement the budget with savings. Due to legacy budget surpluses, the HSA entered the 2017-2018 fiscal year with a cash balance of $280,000. The shortfall could be full funded with these cash reserves, which would result in a reserve balance at the end of the fiscal year of approximately $212,000.

3. Cut programming. We could cut spending to cover all the projected $68,000 shortfall (excluding Instructional Support and other expenditures due to contractual commitments.) Based on to-date spending, we would need to cut almost everything remaining from the following categories:

  • Classroom Supplies — $14,500
    • Funding for items such as books, special pencils, balance-bike hook racks, prize box supplies.
  • Facilities (School & HSA) — $3,800
    • Funding for items such as rugs, bean bag chairs, snow blowers, etc.
  • Teacher Appreciation– $9,000:
    • Funding for teacher appreciation week lunches, sympathy gifts, retirement acknowledgement, etc.
  • Extra Curricular— $17,000
    • Funding for sports tournament fees, Lafayette Gives Back, field day, March Madness etc.
  • Resource/SPED Classrooms Instructional Supplies –$6,000
    • Funding for items such as demonstration instruments, books, math manipulatives, etc.
  • Principal’s Fund – $6,000
    • Funding for cleaning supplies, cubbies, printer toner, staff breakfasts etc.
  • Art Supplies — $2,800
    • Funding for construction paper, acrylic paint, quilting supplies, etc.
  • Technology Supplies — $2,000
    • Funding for computer cords, updated program licenses, mouse pads, etc.
  • School-to-School Initiative — $2,000
    • Contribution to program for in-need DCPS schools parent organizations.
  • Teacher Professional Development –$1,900
    • Funding for short-term courses, Praxis exam costs etc.
  • Meetings & Events: $3,000
    • Funding for snacks etc. for general meetings etc. 

4. Combine cuts to programming and supplement with savings. Based on to-date spending, could make targeted cuts and supplement the difference with savings. We suggest the following to save $41,000.

  • Teacher Classroom Supplies – $10,000
  • Facilities (School & HSA) – $2,000
  • Meetings and Events – $3,000
  • Extra Curricular – $10,000
  • Principal Fund – $5,000
  • Teacher Appreciation – $8,000
  • Teacher Professional Development – $1,000
  • School to School Initiative – $2,000

The remaining $27,000 would be covered by savings.

We strongly encourage you to attend in the February 8th General Meeting and participate in the decision-making process that could directly affect your student’s experience.


The budget planning for 2018-2019 will begin mid-February. We will need to consider the reduction in fundraising in relation to expectations for next year and hope to get your input.  Please join us for small budget meetings and the March general membership meeting. 

We urge you to attend any and all of these important budget events:

  • Feb. 15 – Small budget meeting
  • March 1 – General HSA Meeting, budget draft presented
  • March 6 – Small budget meeting

The proposed budget will then have a 30 day review/comment period for Membership. We will need the General Membership to vote on this budget in May. 

We greatly appreciate your support of the HSA and we hope you will join us for these important upcoming discussions. 

[1] It is important to note this budget, and the funds raised through membership donations and events, are separate from the Class Activity Fees of $100 per child. Class Activity Fees are not HSA donations. They directly fund field trips as well as the end of the year class parties. Those will not be impacted by the shortfall.