The Howard County Board of Education has adopted its Operating and Capital Budget requests for the 2024-25 school year (fiscal 2025).

The fiscal 2025 Board of Education Requested Operating Budget totals $1.14 billion, which is a $38.3 million (or 3.5%) increase from the fiscal 2024 Operating Budget. The request for county revenue funding totals $769.8 million, which is a $48.6 million (or 6.7%) increase from the fiscal 2024 budget. State revenues in the budget total $353.2 million, a $7.2 million (or 2.1%) increase over the fiscal 2024 budget.

The board’s adopted budget restores several proposed reductions that were part of the superintendent’s Proposed Fiscal 2025 Operating Budget. Those restorations may be found in a table used by the Board during their budget deliberations; the Board adopted Scenario D from the table, with the addition to restore 2024 summer programs in the amount of $750,000.

“This year’s budget process has been unlike any other, made evident by the hundreds of constituents who provided testimony to the Board on behalf of the programs and services they value,” said Jennifer Swickard Mallo, chair of the Board of Education. “We heard our community and unfortunately we were not able to include every restoration they advocated for and we hoped we could fund. The Board had painful decisions to make, balancing the mandates of the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future with the high-quality programs and offerings the school system has long provided to our families. Nothing about the budget decisions the Board made were easy, but we appreciate the collaboration of Acting Superintendent Barnes and school system staff. We will continue to engage in critical conversations with our County partners to advocate for the best possible outcome for our school system, its students, staff and families.”

The Board also adopted the fiscal 2025 Capital Budget totaling $75.7 million, for costs associated with the renovation/addition of Oakland Mills Middle School; renovating the Faulkner Ridge Center and Applications & Research Laboratory; other systemic renovations/modernizations, roofing projects and equipment; and ongoing projects, such as planning and design to address system needs.

Along with the fiscal 2025 Capital Budget, the Board adopted the fiscal 2026-30 Capital Improvement Program Request in the amount of $522 million, and the fiscal 2025-34 Long-Range Master Plan totaling $1.1 billion.

In late April, County Executive Calvin Ball will submit his proposed budget to the County Council with a recommended funding level for the school system. The Council will then hold a series of public hearings and work sessions before final adoption of the County budget.

Following the Council’s action, the Board will make any necessary adjustments to its requested budget to account for funding level approved by the county and adopt the final fiscal 2025 Operating and Capital budgets. Additional information about the HCPSS budget is available at www.hcpss.org/about-us/budgets/fy25.