Hi there, it’s me, Julia, director of Arts Every Day! I’m here to talk to you about school budgets! Each new school year brings cool crisp air, Fall colors, back-to-school nights, and… budget meetings! WHAT, you say? Already? Yes! Believe it or not, schools have already begun to host Fiscal Year 2025 budget priority meetings open to community members, teachers, families, and students. As the parent of a middle school student, I encourage everyone to attend. It is a great opportunity to discuss what YOU want to see in the coming year and thanks in part to the advocacy of our Youth Arts Council Members last year, the process this year is even more open and transparent. Here is what the process will look like:
School Budget Process: School administrators have the difficult job of deciding how to cover the costs of staff, programs, and everything that it takes to run a school building. Every school is required to host 3 community meetings open to families, students, educators, and community members. Check with your school leaders for details.
- #1: School Priority Engagement Sessions (November – January)
- Principal shares their priorities and gathers feedback
- Sessions are open to families, students, and teachers
- Find your school on this list of meeting dates
- #2: School Community Budget Forums (February – March)
- Principal presents a draft budget and asks for feedback
- #3: Budget Review Meeting (March – April)
- Community reviews the budget that will be submitted to the district for approval
Here are some quick tips to help you be an effective arts advocate:
- Talk to your student and other students, teachers and families at the school. What types of electives, programs, and classes are they eager to take? What is missing from your school?
- Talk to your arts teachers. Do they have what they need?
- Look at your school’s budget for this year. What do you see? What do you have questions about?
- Bring your questions and recommendations to your school’s budget meeting. You can find a list of all budget meetings here.
- Get involved with your school’s School Family Council or PTO.
- JOIN Arts Every Day’s Parent Arts Education Action Committee for advocacy trainings, actions, and collaborations.
About the Baltimore City Public School System’s Budget
Where does the money come from and where does it go? City Schools receive federal, state, and local funding based on the number of students enrolled districtwide. The majority of that money goes to schools. How much money a school receives is based on how many students are enrolled and the specific needs of the students served. To learn more about school funding, watch this short video: