March 13, 2024 - AAPS Budget Update

Ann Arbor Public Schools logoDear Ann Arbor Public Schools Community, 


At the Ann Arbor Public Schools, we are dedicated to providing world-class learning opportunities that help prepare our students for success. We are also dedicated to transparency and keeping our families, staff, students and community informed. As Interim Superintendent, I am sharing with you an important update on our budget and finances.  


This past November, as part of our regular budget review and audit process, the prior Superintendent made the Board of Education aware of a shortfall in our current school year budget. After being named Interim Superintendent, I authorized Marios Demetriou, retired AAPS Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Operations, to perform a comprehensive top-to-bottom review of district finances to thoroughly assess our financial picture. We are also working with Plante Moran, a third-party independent financial expert, to confirm our analysis of district finances to ensure we have an accurate picture and can proceed on solid footing. 


The initial review has revealed some significant budget challenges for our district that will require immediate and long-term actions, some of which will be painful. These challenges result from three main historical factors: 


1.     Staff has increased by 480 in the last 10 years  

2.     Student enrollment has decreased by 1,123 over the last 4 years 

3.     Recent agreements with our staff, including well-deserved and well-earned raises for employees, approved by our Board of Education resulted in increased staffing costs


As a result of these factors, our district is facing multi-year budget shortfalls that must be addressed immediately. According to the financial analysis, the district will need to cut approximately $25 million from the 2024-25 operating budget to comply with state and Board of Education requirements. 


In addition to requesting a full assessment of measures the district can take to generate revenue, I have also authorized several immediate steps to reduce spending and cut costs, including:   


ü  Reducing central office and administrative staff positions

ü  Freezing hiring

ü  Conducting in-depth reviews of all central office, district and school budgets for efficiencies and cost savings 

ü  Renegotiating contracts with vendors to identify cost savings on contracted services


Board of Education President Feaster has asked for – and I have continued – a full review of how this occurred so that this does not happen again.  While previous budget decisions were made before I became interim superintendent, I am fully committed to addressing them and working with our staff, students, families and the Board of Education to create an action plan to move us forward.  Despite our best efforts, the magnitude of the budget challenge we are facing will require us to make staff and program reductions. I assure you I will prioritize making decisions with our team in a way that minimizes the impact on classrooms and student learning.


As Interim Superintendent, I am committed to keeping our families, staff, students and community up to date with information about this situation. I will provide information in the coming days about opportunities to share your feedback, ideas and input, which we will use to inform our next steps. By working together, we can and will get through this challenging situation as a district and community.  



Jazz Parks 


Interim Superintendent  

Ann Arbor Public Schools