Salt Lake City – Morgan School District will receive $305,939 in School LAND Trust Funds for the 2016-2017 school year, its share of a record $49.3 million in annual earnings from the Permanent State School Fund.
Utah State Treasurer David Damschen announced annual earnings from the Permanent Fund increased by 7.7 percent, a $3.5 million increase over the previous year’s earnings.
Each school within the district will receive funds based on enrollment. These discretionary funds support academic programs chosen by individual School Community Councils, which are composed of parents, teachers and the principal from each school, and are approved by each respective local school board.
“Hiring teachers and aides to reduce class sizes, and investing in classroom technology are often priorities for many schools,” said Tim Donaldson, Director of the School Children’s Trust at the Utah State Board of Education. “However, all academic programs, from reading and math tutoring to language and college prep courses, can be funded with school trust funds.”
This November, voters will be asked to consider Constitutional Amendment B, Utah School Funds Modification, which was endorsed by the state legislature during the 2016 General Session. If passed by voters, the amendment will create a new formula for distributing annual earnings that considers enrollment growth and inflation, and includes a three-year average of fund growth to offset market volatility.
At $2.08 billion, the Permanent State School Fund is the state’s largest land grant trust fund. Interest and dividends are distributed directly to schools statewide each year through the School LAND Trust Program.
“We are dedicated to maintaining the Fund’s long-term viability for the schoolchildren of today and the future and are pleased to see its sustained and increased growth,” said David Crandall, Chair of the Utah State Board of Education.
The Permanent State School Fund has grown from $18 million in 1983 to over $2 billion in 2015 because of involvement from the education community, support from Utah’s legislature, revenues from the School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration, and prudent investment by the School and Institutional Trust Funds Office.