RVSD Funding Overview

  • School funding in California is complex. Although all CA school districts have a determined per pupil amount called the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), each receives funding in one of two ways based on the higher of 1) their calculated LCFF revenues (called a state aid funded district) or 2) their property tax base (called a basic aid or community funded district). 

    While approximately 90% of districts in CA are state aid funded, nearly all districts in Marin County are community funded. In RVSD, because our property tax base is lower than our LCFF calculated amount, we are a state aid funded district. In an LCFF state funded district like RVSD, funding is based on the higher of the district’s current year’s Average Daily Attendance (ADA), the prior year’s ADA, or the average of the 3 prior years’ ADA. 

    CA schools continue to see an enrollment decline and it’s expected to continue into the foreseeable future. Over the past few years, RVSD and most districts in the State have not only seen a decrease in our enrollment but have also seen a decrease in attendance rates (enrollment is the number of students who are registered to attend our schools, and attendance is the number of students who actually attend school). For us, student enrollment and attendance are critical to our funding, and the decline in both has meant that our state aid revenues have decreased.

    In the 2023-24 school year, despite an increase of 8.22% in per student funding by the State, RVSD continues to see a lower increase in total funding due to declining enrollment and the impacts of lower attendance rates. Although RVSD receives a combination of LCFF revenues and Parcel Tax revenues, because of our ADA, we are anticipated to only see an increase of 2.12% in overall revenues for this school year (not the 8.22% mentioned above).  We need to do everything possible to increase attendance to maximize funding. 

    In addition to the importance of student attendance rates to LCFF revenues, in RVSD we rely on our parcel tax dollars (thank you Fairfax and San Anselmo voters) to directly fund teacher and support staff salaries (not administrators or employee pension costs). Given the District is in business to serve our students, the single largest source of our expenses is on employees. During this past school year (2022-23), the District spent approximately 78% of all general fund expenses towards staff, and this year we are budgeted to spend 79%.

    If interested in learning more about the District’s revenues and expenses, check out past Board Meeting agenda items: