Mill Levy Override (MLO) Citizens’ Oversight Committee

  • School District 11’s Ballot Issues, were approved by voters in 2000 and 2017, which called for the formation of a Citizens’ Oversight Committee to monitor implementation performance and use of the new Mill Levy Override (MLO) funding. 

    The Committee meets monthly at the District 11 Administration Complex (1115 North El Paso Street, Colorado Springs, Colorado) to review and monitor both the 2000 and 2017 MLO monies.

    Committee Members are asked to perform the following:
    •Monitor MLO spending plan progress
    •Make recommendations regarding any program modifications
    •Familiarize themselves with the MLO spending plan and the D-11 business plan and mission
    •Participate in periodic public briefings to inform the community about implementation progress
    •Attend regular meetings, at least six per year

    MLO Audits: Performance Excellence Assessment Reports
    Consistent with the Mill Levy Election Ballot Questions, Colorado Springs School District 11 has conducted a number of biennial audits of the MLO fund to review its progress in meeting requirements of the comprehensive district performance plan or business plan. Available Audits are below for review.

    MLO Annual Summaries
    To maximize accountability, District 11 has prepared a Program Implementation Plan (PIP) for each of the 25 items contained in the MLO spending plan. The PIPs include budget codes, budget amount, item description, quantification of costs, a history of implementation costs, and a breakout of full-time equivalent (FTE) personnel according to employee group to be hired. Also included are any plan amendments, PIP relationship to the election questions and how each PIP fits into the current District 11 business plan. Available Summaries are below for review.

MLO External Audits

FY 19/20 MLOOC Mtg Notes

FY 17/18-18/19 MLOOC Mtg Notes

FY16-17 MLOOC Mtg Notes

FY15-16 MLOOC Mtg Notes

FY14-15 MLOOC Mtg Notes

  • Fall 2019 Update

    Posted by MLO Update Team on 10/21/2019 1:00:00 PM

    Did you know that School District 11 has the largest mill levy on a per-pupil basis of any Colorado school district? Below are some updatest to the 2017 mill levy items implemented so far:

    1. Comprehensive Support Model – This item phases in over 6 years and we are now in the middle of the implementation.  We have already hired many nurses, psychologists and counselors related to the social/emotional needs of our children. We look forward to full implementation by FY 22/23.

     

    1. Teacher Compensation – Starting teacher salary was increased to over $39,000 and teachers received an average 7.2% raise spread between FY 17/18 and FY 18/19.  Those pay raises are now imbedded in the teacher salary schedule.

     

    1. ESP Compensation – ESP staff received an average of 10% increase spread between FY 17/18 and FY 18/19.  Those pay raises are now imbedded in the ESP salary schedule.

     

    1. Security – This line item provides for 5 additional School Resource Officers (SROs).  This item begins implementation this year and more fully implements next year.

     

    1. Class Size Reduction – This line item currently provides for 10 additional classroom teachers this year and a total of 25 additional classroom teacher starting next year and thereafter.  The teachers are assigned where enrollments are higher than projected.

     

    1. Technology Replacement – The first 3 years of this allocation ($1 million per year) were used for the District’s new phone system.  Future year allocations will be dedicated to server, PC and laptop replacements.

     

    1. Technology Staff – Four additional Technology staff have been hired to support our IT infrastructure.

     

    1. Capital Reserve/Construction – This line item phases in over the next six years but for the current fiscal year we are already spending approximately $16 million per year.  Unfortunately, we still have a significant backlog of urgent capital needs.  We are excited to see the planning for the reconstruction of our D11 facility infrastructure in the near future.

     

    1. Charter Schools – This line item provides a proportionate MLO allocation to charter schools (on a per-pupil basis), as required by law.

     

    1. Bond Debt Reserve – This line item has already accumulated over $20 million for the early repayment of our bonded indebtedness.

     

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  • April 2019 Update

    Posted by MLO Update Team on 4/18/2019 2:00:00 PM

    School District 11 is dedicated to the transparency of work that involves all previous mill levies and bonds that our voters approved. In the spirit of transparency, audits are conducted by a third party review team on a biennial basis. Recently, the auditors from PCG group were in town to conduct an audit of both the 2000 and 2017 mill levies. As part of the process, the folks with PCG conduct:

    • An examination of numerous documents and reports provided by D11, such as: previous mill levy audits, the financial plan, technology plan, the capital project plan, the Mill Levy Program, implementation plan summaries, budget information, and public engagement meeting notes;

    • An analysis of student achievement and demographic data, as provided by the Colorado Department of Education;

    • Site visits by PCG to conduct focus groups and interviews with various stakeholders; and,

    • A survey administered to district staff.

     

    When PCG completes their most recent audit, it will be posted on the mill levy override web page. All past audit reports may also be found on this web page.

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  • March 2019 Update

    Posted by MLO Update Team on 3/22/2019 8:30:00 AM

    We are thankful for the voters who supported the 2017 3E ballot initiative, providing School District 11 with critically necessary funds. The 2017 School District 11 mill levy override (MLO) phases in over six years and is currently in year two. Here is an update on how the 2017 MLO funds are being used.

    Comprehensive Support Model

    This proposal addresses student needs with the implementation of a coordinated program of professionals and resources. The purpose is to implement comprehensive school counseling programs and the development of student coordinated teams to address individual and school-based barriers to student achievement. Staff additions will be new to the elementary schools and augment what is currently in place for the middle and high schools. This item has been partially implemented with the majority of expenses related to the addition of many counselors.

    Compensation

    Pay raises for teachers and educational support staff in were implemented in two phases. The first installment was paid in the spring of 2018, and the second was paid in the fall of 2018, with the new school year.

    School Security

    Additional School Resource Officers (SROs) at the middle school level will begin to be implemented in the 2019-2020 school year.

    Class Size Reduction

    This item phases in and will eventually pay for 25 additional teachers to address class size “hot spots” and program needs.

    Technology Replacement Plan

    This item will be used to pay for technology infrastructure replacement across the District. The first two year’s allocation of $2 million is being used to implement a new telephone/communications system district-wide. Future technology replacements will include such thinkgs as servers, desktops, laptops, networking.

    Technology Support Staff

    This item funds four additional support staff to help maintain all of the new technology infrastructure.

    Capital Renewal/Replacement

    The Capital Renewal/Replacement item will fund approximately $17 million a year in capital projects, plus an additional $1.4 million in projects recently approved by the Board. This item phases in over six years. The District currently has a $700 million backlog of capital needs, so it will take time to catch up.

    Charter School Funding

    As required by State statutes, this item gives a share of MLO funds to the charter schools.

    Bond Debt Reduction

    This allows the District to take the difference between the full 2017 MLO amount of $42 million and place that money into a bond redemption reserve fund, which will allow D11 to significantly pay off old outstanding debt. The advantage for this is D11 might be able to pursue a low/no cost bond issue to accelerate our capital program at some point in the future.

    Accountability Measures:

    · Separate MLO accounting fund

    · Detailed spending plan addressing individual line items

    · Board-approved governance plan that restricts transfer of funds away from voter-approved items

    · Regular performance review by an outside firm

    · Citizen’s Oversight Committee

    · District of Distinction award for accountability in MLO plans

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  • February 2019 Update

    Posted by MLO Update Team on 2/20/2019 8:00:00 AM

    In June, School District 11 facilities crews determined Trailblazer's gymnasium lights needed to be updated due to "foot-candles," or the measurement of the light at given levels, that were impacting student activities, due to a glare from the old lights on the gym's floor. New LED lights greatly reduced the glare, and will contribute to overall energy savings. 

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  • January 2019 Update

    Posted by MLO Update Team on 1/15/2019 5:00:00 AM

    The Mill Levy Override book, detailing information about the 2017 MLO program plan implementations and documented expenditures, is in the final draft stages now. It will be posted to the D11 Financial Transparency website in early February for the public to view. Additionally, the Mill Levy Override Citizen's Oversight Committee's annual report to the Board of Education is scheduled to be presented on February 13 at the regularly scheduled board meeting. You may stream all regular board meetings live by clicking here. For information on the Board of Education meetings, agendas, and archive documents, click here.

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  • December 2018 Update

    Posted by Mill Levy Override Update Team on 12/31/2018

    At Penrose Elementary, kindergarteners are taking Project Based Learning (PBL) to a new level with their “Kindness Project.” Each project begins with a driving question that guides the students as they strive to brainstorm solutions for positive community change. Penrose kindergarteners have already contributed to the school’s community garden this year and are looking forward to making an impact on a much larger scale. The “Kindness Project” will include kindergarteners collaborating with One Nation Walking Together, a small non-profit assisting Native Americans, as well as local community organizations to provide hats, mittens, toys, socks and water as an act of kindness to those who might need a little boost this season. Ask any Penrose kindergartener and they will tell you, “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.” This project supports the newly implemented “Kindness in the Classroom” curriculum, which was introduced and made possible with funds from the 2017 mill levy override.

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  • November 2018 Update

    Posted by MLO Update Team on 11/14/2018 7:30:00 PM

    D11 voters passed the 2017 mill levy override request on last year's November ballot. As part of the MLO plan, the District plans to phase back in the presence of Colorado Springs Police School Resource Officers (SROs) at the middle school level. At the regular Board of Education meeting on October 24, 2018, the Board approved a request to amend the original MLO plan. This amendment will accelerate the hire of two SROs for the 2019-2020 school year, as opposed to hiring all five middle school SROs in the 2020-2021 school year. This plan amendment is also preferred by the Colorado Springs Police Department, since it would be difficult for them to train and deploy five SROs in one year, due to the shortage of police officers.

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  • October 2018 Update

    Posted by MLO Update Team on 10/15/2018 1:30:00 PM

    Almost one year ago, School District 11 voters approved the $42 million dollar mill levy override, which is providing critical funding to our schools, students, and staff. Prior to the MLO passage, recruiting and retaining high quality staff was proving to be somewhat difficult, due to the competitiveness of salaries offered by other schools and school districts. We thank our voters who saw the value of providing competitive salaries for our teachers and support staff. Today, thanks to a portion of the 2017 MLO, employees from all three employee groups saw compensation increases that were effective July 1, 2018. This increase also includes raising the starting teacher salary for teachers with a Bachelor's degree to $39,000 from $34,750.

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  • September 2018 Update

    Posted by MLO Update Team on 9/24/2018 11:00:00 AM

    We thank our voters for passing the 2017 mill levy override in November, providing critically needed funds for D11 students, staff, and facilities. As part of the MLO, voters wanted to see funds directed to secure additional school counselors to ensure our kids are receiving the best guidance in order to maximize student success. As part of this promise, D11 has implemented a district-wide social-emotional learning curriculum. Additionally, six new elementary counselors have been placed at Adams, Edison, Fremont, Penrose, Rogers, and West Elementary Schools. Please check back each month, as we will be providing regular MLO updates on this page.

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