Permanent Improvement Issue

Permanent Improvement Issue Approved

On May 8, 2018, voters approved Ohio Hi-Point's 0.6-mill permanent improvement levy. The issue was passed after a collective vote was counted from all 14 partner high school districts in the 5 counties Ohio Hi-Point serves.

The Board of Education, administration, staff, and students at Ohio Hi-Point want to thank voters for approving the permanent improvement issue. “This means we will be able to renovate and expand the learning spaces on our Bellefontaine Main Campus as well as update equipment, technology, and tools in our satellite programs,” said Superintendent Rick Smith, Ed.D. “I also want to thank the many volunteers that helped get information out to our communities about this important issue.”

Ohio Hi-Point provides students the opportunity to receive professional certifications and specialized credentials needed for the 21st century workforce as well as earn college credit for Ohio Hi-Point coursework, making higher education more affordable for today’s families.

“This issue was about offering a 21st century education for 21st century jobs,” noted Smith. “I’m excited that voters understood the value we provide to prepare students for in-demand jobs in our communities.”

Permanent Improvement Issue

On November 15, 2017, the Ohio Hi-Point Career Center Board of Education voted unanimously to place a 0.6-mill permanent improvement issue on the May 8, 2018 ballot. During the December 13, 2017 meeting, in the second of two votes required by legal process, the Board unanimously accepted the certificate of the county auditor and approved a resolution declaring intent to proceed with the permanent improvement issue to renovate the career center’s 43-year old building to provide students advanced technical training for 21st century jobs.

The issue, which is the first time in 40 years the district has placed an issue on the ballot, will cost taxpayers $1.84 a month, or $22 a year, per $100,000 of a home’s assessed market value.

The permanent improvement issue is needed to offer enhanced lab-learning classes in fields that have local jobs to be filled, such as healthcare and skilled manufacturing, as well as create new learning spaces so additional training can be offered. The issue is also needed to make repairs and improvements to prolong the use of the existing building.

The Board has been discussing a plan to meet the demand for skilled workers in emerging jobs throughout the district’s communities and adjust and adapt to the ever-changing technology needs for the past few years. Students who attend Ohio Hi-Point can receive professional certifications needed for the modern-day workforce, and earn college credit for completed coursework.

The district is responsible with taxpayer resources and in the district’s day-to-day operations. In the last 20 years, the career center has lived within its means while growing by more than 3,500 students.

“We know how important it is ensuring every student has a plan, whether for employment or continuing education. Preparing today’s students for tomorrow’s successes through advanced technical and skills training will continue to help grow our own local economy,” said superintendent Dr. Rick Smith. “This permanent improvement issue will provide funds for renovations on the Bellefontaine Main Campus and increase technology, tools, and equipment within the district's satellite programs needed for today's modern-day workforce,” stated Smith.

at a Glance

What: 0.6-mill
When: May 8, 2018
Cost to Taxpayers: $1.84 a month, or $22 a year, per $100,000 of a home's assessed market value
Why: To renovate and expand the Bellefontaine Main Campus and provide additional equipment, technology, and tools within the district's satellite programs

Permanent Improvement FAQs

Why permanent improvement?

Permanent improvement levies can only be used for construction or equipment (which will last more than 5 years). A PI levy cannot be used for operating costs or salaries.

Why is the permanent improvement issue needed?

The permanent improvement issue is needed to:

  • Offer enhanced lab-learning classes in fields that have local jobs to be filled, such as healthcare and skilled manufacturing.
  • Provide students with more opportunities to study in labs that offer advanced technical training needed for the workforce.
  • Create new learning spaces so additional training can be offered studying in-demand new career fields that lead to 21st century technology jobs.
  • Make repairs and improvements to enhance safety and prolong the use of the existing buildings on the Bellefontaine Main Campus.
  • Increase technology, tools, and equipment within the district's satellite programs.
  • Creating new state-of-the-art spaces that give students job-ready training that is offered in very few other places in the state.
  • Have dedicated areas for training students in evolving new technology
  • Expand classroom sizes in order to be able to accommodate more students.

How will the funds be used?

The issue will provide funds for renovations on the Bellefontaine Main Campus and an increase in technology, tools, and equipment within the district's satellite programs needed for today's modern-day workforce.

Will there be any additional levies or bonds?

Ohio Hi-Point is committed to strong fiscal management and the career center has not asked voters for additional funding for operations or facilities in more than 40 years.

Who will be voting on the issue?

The proposed 0.6-mill permanent improvement levy will be voted on by community members living within Ohio Hi-Point's district and include the following 14 partner high schools: Bellefontaine, Benjamin Logan, Graham, Indian Lake, Kenton, Marysville, Mechanicsburg, Ridgemont, Riverside, Triad, Upper Scioto Valley, Urbana, Waynesfield-Goshen, and West Liberty-Salem.

How will the votes be counted?

The Election Day results for OHP's permanent improvement levy will be a collective vote from all community members in all partner school districts.

Financial Summary

Over the course of more than 40 years, the district has managed growth, made building improvements, and expanded services to students on the Bellefontaine Main Campus and through the district’s satellite programs all without asking residents for an additional operating tax levy.

The district – while earning the Auditor of State Award four times within the past six years – has also been recognized by the Ohio Senate for “exemplary financial reporting” during three of the past six audits. In the past 15 years, Ohio Hi-Point has grown to serve more than 4,000 students at 12 different locations including the Bellefontaine Campus. During that time, OHP has never received less than an unqualified audit opinion.

“It is important to us that the public can trust the district to act responsibly with our resources,” explained Treasurer Eric Adelsberger. “We understand what it means to live within our means and we have expanded opportunities for students by being very considerate and purposeful as it relates to how and why we spend our operating funds.”

For a more in-depth look at Ohio Hi-Point's finances, please review the financial summary below.

Ohio Hi-Point Financial Summary

General Fund Revenue Sources - Fiscal Year 2017

During the 2017 Fiscal Year (FY), 47% of Ohio Hi-Point’s General Operating funding was generated through local sources and 53% through state sources. Looking back to FY2005, 65% of our funding was generated locally while only 35% was provided through state sources. This change in the local/state funding ratio is due, in part, to a significant reduction in Ohio Hi-Point’s Personal Property (TPP) tax base – a locally generated revenue source. The FY2005 also marks the point when Ohio Hi-Point opened its first series of satellite programs.

Satellite programs are Ohio Hi-Point classes operated within our partner school's buildings that extend our career and technical educational offerings to local students in their own school buildings. It’s a win-win situation; more local students can be served by Ohio Hi-Point in their home school district and Ohio Hi-Point receives additional state (not local) funding for each of these students that we have the privilege to serve.

Fiscal Year 2017 Real Estate Tax Sources
Ohio Hi-Point’s Real Estate tax revenues are based on a 2-mill operating levy that was approved by local voters in 1977. These 2-mills are levied on all Ohio Hi-Point school district residents. Based on the Ohio Department of Education’s 2017 Cupp Report, the number of students served by our local K-12 district are as follows:

  • Logan County – four schools (Bellefontaine, Benjamin Logan, Indian Lake, and Riverside) serving 6,632 students
  • Champaign – five schools (Graham, Mechanicsburg, Triad, Urbana, and West Liberty-Salem) serving 5,838 students
  • Union County – one school (Marysville) serving 5,374 students
  • Hardin County – three schools (Upper Scioto Valley, Kenton City, and Ridgemont) serving 2,959 students
  • Auglaize County – one school (Waynesfield-Goshen) serving 481 student

OHP Enrollment History (Based on FTE Counts)
During the Fiscal Year (FY) 2004, Ohio Hi-Point served 452 Full Time Equivalent (FTE) students. Beginning in the FY2005, Ohio Hi-Point opened its first satellite programs, bringing career and technical education directly to our partner schools. Today, Ohio Hi-Point satellite programs serve approximately 3,500 seventh through 12th grade students per week in 56 programs in 12 different locations.

It is critical to note that the 3,500 satellite students referenced above are not served on a full-time basis. Satellite students spend a portion of their day in an Ohio Hi-Point program located within their middle/high school building and the balance of their day in their typical home school classes. All students, Ohio Hi-Point and home school students alike, are counted and funded by the state of Ohio on a Full Time Equivalent (FTE) basis – as represented in the graph below.

Consider the following examples:

  • One student enrolled on the Ohio Hi-Point Bellefontaine Main Campus all day equals 1 FTE for Ohio Hi-Point state funding purposes;
  • One student enrolled in an Ohio Hi-Point Bellefontaine Main Campus career program lab only while choosing to remain at their partner school to attend their academic classes equals ½ FTE for Ohio Hi-Point state funding purposes;
  • One student enrolled in a satellite course for one period a day and for one semester only may equal as little as 1/16 FTE (based on an 8 period day) for Ohio Hi-Point funding purposes.

The graph below illustrates Ohio Hi-Point enrollment on an FTE basis over the past 15 school years. Contrary to what many might find logical – growth in satellite programs and enrollment does not lead to a corresponding reduction in enrollment on our Bellefontaine Main Campus. Please note that enrollment increased steadily, both in satellites and on our Bellefontaine Main Campus over the 5-year period of FY2006 through FY2011. We attribute this growth to a symbiotic rather than adversarial relationship between satellite and Bellefontaine Main Campus programing. Simply put, satellite programming introduced the Ohio Hi-Point brand of education to a whole new group of students and their parents who liked what they saw – and they talked about what they liked – and enrollment in both pathways increased.

The enrollment decline noted during FY2012 through FY2013 is reflective of operational changes made in response to significant changes in how Ohio Hi-Point received its funding from State sources during FY2010 through FY2013. Beginning in FY2014, FTE enrollment once again began a steady march upward with satellite programs responding initially and Bellefontaine Main Campus programs soon following likewise. Specifically, since FY2016, the district has been expanding career technical education opportunities in OHP’s partner schools and on the Bellefontaine Main Campus

OHP State Funding History
The state funding model has the potential to change every two years based upon the biennial budget proposed by the Governor of Ohio and approved by the Ohio Legislature. A 24-year history of Ohio Hi-Point’s state funding revenues and our responses to legislatively prescribed funding mechanisms is provided below. During Fiscal Year (FY) 2005, the Ohio Hi-Point Board of Education committed to establishing strong partnerships with our partner schools through satellite programs.

During the past 14 years we have invested over $25 million in Ohio Hi-Point satellite programs. This investment in satellite programming has yielded significant positive returns:

  • Ohio Hi-Point is impacting thousands of student lives rather than hundreds. Approximately 4,000 students can earn industry certifications and college credit for their completed coursework through career and technical education programs.
  • Ohio Hi-Point is being rewarded financially for its efforts through the state funding model having increased state (not local) funding sources by more than 250% since the opening of our first satellite programs in FY2005.

Fiscal Year 2017 General Fund Expenses by Type
Our mission is to develop our most valuable resource – people – by providing quality career and academic education. We believe this also means hiring the best educators for our students. Hiring and employing qualified staff equated to 65% of OHP’s total Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 General Fund expenses.

The district also believes that to provide a 21st century education for 21st century jobs, funds for equipment and supplies in the classroom are just as vital as the educators utilizing these resources to prepare our students for success.

Fiscal Year 2017 General Fund Expenses by Department
Even with continuous care and reinvestment, our current Bellefontaine Main Campus building is aging. Our high school building’s roof is more than 40 years old and is still in good condition because it has been exceptionally well maintained over the years; however, nothing will last forever.

We know that even more money will need to be invested in our Facilities & Grounds department over time. A significant renovation project would allow Ohio Hi-Point to annually invest in a like-new building well into the future as opposed to continuing to maintain a structure that is now more than four decades old.

We also know that technology needs and equipment are always evolving. Our goal is to keep pace with business and industry updates and the skill requirements needed by students to successfully enter the workforce or higher education.

Learn More

Over the next several weeks, our video series will highlight the amazing stories of students earning industry certifications and college credit for their coursework. You’ll also learn about our dedicated staff and the strong partnerships between education and industry. Renovations and expansion on the Bellefontaine Main Campus as well as additional technology, tools, and equipment within our satellite programs are needed to continue providing students a 21st century education for 21st century jobs.

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About Ohio Hi-Point

Ohio-Hi Point provides high school students within our 14 partner school districts the opportunity for advanced technical and skills training, so they can be prepared to go directly into the modern workforce and find jobs. Ohio Hi-Point also provides students with the opportunity to earn college credit for their coursework, making college more affordable for today’s families.

View the district profile