Friday, May 12, 2017

Bond Petition Language and Multi-Year Facilities Plan

At their regular meeting on May 10, 2017 the CCA Board of Education approved Bond Petition Language for the sale of bonds up to $36 million dollars. Community members will be seeking signatures on the petition over the next several weeks. Any CCA community member may gather signatures on the petition form pictured below. If you would like a blank petition you can contact the district office, 319-828-4510. In order to go before the Board of Education at their June 14th meeting, the petitions must be returned to Board President, Steve Swenka, at 327 S Augusta Ave., Oxford IA 52322 not sooner than June 5th and no later than 4:00 pm on June 14th.

The submission of the petition(s) at the June 14 Board of Education will trigger the bond vote being on the September ballot.  The Facilities Plan as you see it here is the result of the work of the Facilities Committee last summer and then the conversation with the Board that several of the Committee members were able to attend in the fall. It was decided by the Board after that discussion that including a new elementary in this bond was the "best" path with the bonding capacity presented by Piper-Jaffray. The top portion of the plan would be impacted by the September 2017 vote. The bottom portion is an anticipated bond vote in 2022.

Some anticipated questions:
1. How would passage of the bond impact the CCA tax rate?
Below is history and projection of the CCA tax rate. We anticipate maintaining a relatively constant overall tax rate of $16.94-$16.95 for the foreseeable future. Our Debt Service rate cannot exceed the voter approved rate of $4.05, currently $4.03. If the district maintains the debt service near that maximum level, other levies, could be manipulated in order to maintain the overall rate at current levels.

2. What if the bond fails?
If the bond fails the district will need to bus students from North Bend Elementary and Tiffin Elementary to Clear Creek Elementary and Amana Elementary. North Bend and Tiffin will be over capacity in the very near future, see previous post. The district would need to utilize available classroom space at CCE and AE in order to manage class sizes across the district. Additional bussing would increase General Fund expenditures, which consumes dollars that could otherwise be used for teacher salaries and instructional materials. With funding levels from the State running low, maintaining adequate funds in the General Fund is already a challenge.

3. Will elementary attendance areas be changed with the addition of another elementary in Tiffin?
Not likely. With the anticipated growth in the Tiffin, North Liberty, and Coralville communities maintaining adequate space will continue to be a challenge for CCA. When the new elementary, hopefully, comes online in August 2019 the intention would be for it to be a 4-5 center for Tiffin Elementary and North Bend Elementary. This will allow the district to maintain the current elementary boundaries for K-3 students and fits with the long-range plan of a new, larger high school, conversion of the current high school to a 6-8 middle school, and conversion of the current middle school to a 4-5 center, and elementary schools to a PK-3 configuration.

Please feel free to email me at: with any questions you have, or post them as a comment on this post. 

It's an exciting time for the Clippers!

Tim Kuehl

Friday, May 5, 2017

CCA Enrollment Projections

CCA continues to see growing enrollment and the projections from RSP and associates show a likely continued increase for the foreseeable future. The enrollment growth is concentrated in the communities of Tiffin, North Liberty, and Coralville. Each of these cities have a number of developments in our district which will bring more students to CCA.

One concern that I hear periodically is that students open enrolling into CCA are causing the need for increased capacity in our facilities. While we do see a positive balance in open enrollment at CCA, the net has remained fairly constant over the past several years at approximately 200 students open enrolled into the district. The need for increased instructional space is due entirely to the developments within our district and the resulting increase in resident students.

Below you will see two charts from the RSP report that demonstrate our historical growth and projected enrollment over the next five years.

The RSP report in it's entirety can be found HERE

Enrollment Projections:

The Facilities Committee developed a proposal which the Board of Education reviewed and is moving forward with. Look for that post in the near future!

If you have any questions regarding this post please contact me at

While the enrollment growth brings challenges to our schools and communities, it is an exciting and positive time to be a Clipper!


Tim Kuehl

cpreston: The current plan was not an administrative recommendation. It came about at a fall work session where several Facilities Committee members worked with the Board. You are correct, the budget was increased from $25 million to $35 million per the updated projections from Piper-Jaffray. The timing for the Facilities Committee was definitely not ideal. What came out of that work session was consensus that if adding the elementary to the Committee's proposal was feasible, the district should pursue it.

The higher projections for Tiffin Elementary are related to the known planned developments in that attendance area. There is a large development beginning in Tiffin to the north and west of Tiffin Elementary. There is also planned development in the near future in Coralville, the West Land Use Area, on the east side of 380. 

Friday, April 14, 2017

CCA FY 18 Certified Budget

At their special meeting on April 12th the Board of education approved the Certified Budget for FY 2018. Districts are required under Iowa law to have their certified budgets approved by April 15.

The top box gives Total Special Program Funding. For CCA these include the Instructional Support Levy (ISL) and the Voted Physical Plant and Equipment Levy (VPPEL). The ISL is a portion of the general fund that is used for instructional materials, staff salaries, etc. The VPPEL is, as the name says, used for the upkeep and improvements of our facilities, technology, vehicle purchases, some band instruments, and other equipment with an individual price over $500. It cannot be used for salaries. A unique characteristic of these levies is that they are funded by a combination of property tax and income surtax.

The second box down shows that the ISL is funded with a 7% income surtax rate, in combination with a property tax rate of $0.02471(Line 7 lower on the page). The VPPEL is funded with a 5% income surtax rate and a property tax rate of $0.05539 (Line 14 lower on the page). These rates are consistent with FY 17.

The bottom box, with numbered lines has the breakdown of CCA property tax rates. The FY 18 rate of $16.95892 is within 100ths of a cent of the FY 17 rate. CCA is unique in that the Amana Library Fund is utilized by our district. The historic Amana district pays a $0.20 higher rate than the rest of the CCA district.  The $16.95 rate is for the historic Amana district, the remainder of CCA pays a rate of $16.75. Our projections show a stable rate over the next five years. Reminder that the property tax you pay each year may go up or down based on your valuation changes, as well as the potentially changing tax rates of other entities.

If you have any questions regarding the CCA certified budget or tax rate, please contact Tim Kuehl or Lori Robertson at the district office: 319-828-4510.


Tim Kuehl

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

CCA Calendar for 2017-2018

At their January 18th meeting the CCA Board of Education approved the following calendar for the 2017-2018 school year. My apologies for the incorrect calendar that was released previously. Due to the Governor's actions a couple years ago we cannot start prior to August 23rd.

Tim Kuehl

Monday, November 14, 2016

Smarter Balanced Assessment

As you are likely aware, Iowa is switching to a new mandatory assessment. Schools had been utilizing the Iowa Assessments and will be required to utilize the Smarter Balanced Assessments in 2017-2018 for Reading and Mathematics. CCA is still exploring how the interim assessments will be utilized in our district. Currently students are administered the iReady assessment in much the same way that the Smarter Balanced interim assessments are intended to be used. We will be studying both assessments and implementing a plan that best informs our teachers regarding student learning needs.

Attached is an FAQ from the Iowa Department of Education.


Tim Kuehl

Monday, October 17, 2016

Facilities Committee Recommendation

This presentation, link, was shared with the CCA Board of Education at their September meeting. The Board had preliminary discussion at their retreat on October 12th. They will discuss further at their meeting on October 19th and have invited Facilities Committee members to attend the work session in December.

Tim Kuehl

Friday, September 9, 2016

Public Forum - Facilities 9-8-16

CCA held a public forum to collect input on future facilities projects on 9-8-16. The Facilities Committee is meeting again on 9-13-16 to analyze the data and formulate a recommendation(s) for the Board of Education. Below are links to materials shared at the forum and a survey where you can submit your opinions. The link will close on Monday evening in order to have the data ready for the committee on Tuesday. Please take some time to read the materials and complete the survey, share with your CCA friends and neighbors, we'd like as much feedback as possible in putting the recommendation together.

Tim Kuehl