Update from Dr. Johnson on MLO/Bond

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Thank you all for supporting the 5A and 5B ballot initiatives. Although extremely close, results indicate that neither initiative has passed. Although it does not appear that we will receive additional funding through a passage of 5A and 5B, we promise to continue focusing on providing the best salary and compensation package we can offer all employees. We will continue to remain competitive with DCSD and listen to feedback from our stakeholders that can put us in a position to provide innovative solutions that will allow us to stand out as a leader in staff compensation.

We are confident and will partner with DCSD to focus on the importance of providing competitive salaries that align with our neighboring districts and focus on the November 2023 ballot initiatives that are likely to be recommended.

We fully expect our state revenue to increase and hope that we will be in a position to offer raises for next year, as we have for the past several school years. Per-pupil revenue is our major source of funding and is determined by enrollment. We have been focused on increasing enrollment efforts which are paying off, as shown on our waitlist. We currently have over 800 students on the waitlist for the 2023-24 school year, which is growing daily. In December, we will be inviting families for enrollment for next year and are projected to increase our student body by at least 150 or more.

Additionally, we’ve already begun our efforts in collecting data about families who intend on returning to STEM or looking to go elsewhere. This is valuable data for your administration team to consider over the remaining months of this school year. These efforts will allow us the flexibility to support students and staff in various ways.

We can accomplish anything if we continue to pull together as a community to provide students with the best education possible. Douglas County is one of the top achieving districts in Colorado, and STEM School Highlands Ranch is the TOP performing school within the county! We have a proven track record of high achievement, excellent financial ratings, and a focus on supporting our staff through challenging times. Although the ballot initiatives did not fall in the district’s favor, we will continue to live our vision and mission throughout the community.

Thank you for your continued support and focus on the STEM staff and students!! I am inspired and proud every day by your enthusiasm, passion, and dedication to the community! I appreciate you all!

Thank you,

Dr. Karen Johnson, Interim CEO of KOSON Schools

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