More than 480 residents took the time to complete the anonymous and voluntary exit survey that was offered to voters at the Fayetteville-Manlius School District annual budget vote, which was held May 21.
The district has offered the survey to voters for nearly a decade. Responses help district officials determine how residents become educated about the school budget, what community priorities are related to the programs and services the district offers its students and the community’s overall satisfaction with the district.
“It is critical that residents are informed about what is happening in the district, and that is especially true when it comes to how and why we are spending their tax dollars,” Superintendent Craig J. Tice said. “We strive to be the community’s first and best source of news about the district and will continue to make that a priority as we embark on a new school year.”
The exit survey collected demographic data about who voted on the budget and information about why voters voted the way they did. Because the majority of the questions remain the same from year-to-year, the district is able to identify any shifts in community sentiment regarding the district.
Overall, 90% of survey participants said they had enough information on the proposed budget. Survey respondents indicated that district publications were their best source of budget information (83%).
The $85.9 million budget proposition passed by 74% with 899 yes votes and 314 no votes. In 2019, 1,213 residents voted on the school budget, which is 437 fewer residents than voted in 2018. Of the 1,213 residents who voted in May, 481 chose to fill out an exit survey, which is a response rate of 40%.
While the survey results do not represent the opinions of all voters, or even the majority, the survey does provide residents with an opportunity to share their opinions about the district and its proposed budget. The report is shared with district administration as well as board of education members.
Check out the full report to find out such information as why voters voted the way they did and what non-mandated areas they would want the district to preserve if it is necessary for the district to make future budget cuts.