Faster than Inflation

Someone posted a link to ballotpedia’s entry for Wheaton-Warrenville CUDS 200 on social media.  I took a look. There is some nice historical data there.

If you have lived in CUSD 200 for two decades or longer, and “feel” like school taxes have gone up faster than inflation, you have good reason. 


ballotpedia 93 to 2003 total rev

ballotpedia 93 to 2003 exp

ballotpedia 93 to 2003 bonds

Using a US inflation calculator to determine what we should expect if revenue, expenses and debt went up with inflation, we find it all went up significantly faster:

Note:  Debt & Gov. Payments is “payments to state and local governments and interest on school system debt”


The number of students in the district does not account for this large budget growth.

From the CUSD 200 Demographic Trends and Enrollment Projections, June 2017 report by John D. Kasarda, Ph.D., in 1993 the total enrollment in D200 was 12,383.  Enrollment peaked in 2003 at 14,314.  In 2013 it was at 13,243 and in 2017 had dropped to 12,642.


enrollment 2000_2017


8 thoughts on “Faster than Inflation

  1. I made no attempt to verify the Ballotpedia data prior to posting. However, Copying the data for debt table into excel, and recomputing the “Outstanding” debt column, we find that the debt table has 4 math errors (2009, 2010, 2012 and average). We have not checked the Ballotpedia Retired and Issued figures against any CUSD 200 or EMMA MSRB figures.
    Based on footnote 9, we suspect that the source of the Ballotpedia debt data is the US Census Bureau.


  2. Wow. Things cost more in 2017 than in 2013……or 1993. I never heard that. Wages haven’t kept up, housing fluctuates, consumer product prices have outpaced inflation based on desirability and materials costs, monetary funding fluctuates based on the dollar vs foreign currencies, the Fed impacts rates, returns, and investing strategies, etc. Shocking.

    It’s a global conspiracy devised by Dr. Evil’s twin brother….Superintendent Schuler and his minions…the Board of District 200! They control everything…the entire global economy! They manage it from their evil lair! And thanks to the Jefferson School issue, we know the goal of their evil plan..thanks to YOU:

    To make our District a “magnet” for those damn undesirable costly kids from coming to our City:

    Tell me: When do the signs go up at the city line: “NO SPECIAL NEEDS FAMILIES”

    Also, when is your proposed rule taking effect that would require that anyone that were already residents, and just didn’t have kids yet, to move if they happen to have the audacity to give birth to a special needs child that would DARE to increase costs? I mean, just because that family paid taxes while your kids were in school and for which they derived no particular family benefit shouldn’t really matter.

    Is there a special location in town we could just put all those bad apples so we could know who they are…you know….just from looking at them?

    Maybe make them move out entirely? Keep up the good work!


  3. In Woodstock D200, we also have expenditures outpacing inflation at an alarming rate.
    In addition to parabolic rise in OEPP, we have sub rosa entitlement obligations for OPEB building up at an alarming rate.
    I suggest you run a projection incorporating all deferred (hidden) accrued interest debt, including OPEB obligations plus other NEW local taxpayer obligations for pensions such as when Admins are paid more than Il Governor.

    While Woodstock was never as wealthy a community as yours, we went from middle class to impoverished in less than a generation, solely due to our school district far outspending the means of its taxable (non-TIF) community.

    Silver lining: at some point, the State of Il is obligated to ‘take over’ your school district’s financial autonomy.
    We have a local district (Cary) which emerged from that reorganization in fantastic shape: great standardized test scores while at the same time ~lowest tax rates in our County: due to re-negotiated contracts, outsourcing, and sensible benefits packages. Quality of education is not solely dependent on insisting on an unlimited amount of public money thrown at it, as proven by the history of this Cary school district.

    I understand you wanted to meet to discuss specific school funding issues, where and when? It would be great if we could be in a place where interested parties could express opinions, with civilized, SPECIFIC facts debated.


    1. Actually Susan…I said I would meet with anyone that was a District member that pays taxes here and is a decision maker. You don’t fit that category. It’s kind of like calling a Senator from another state. They don’t care because you can’t vote them out.

      And all of my points are actual facts and civilized.


  4. I disagree.

    As you know, profligate spending by any school district in Illinois affects all other school districts in that TRS and IMRF are already overburdened.

    And school code is a mandatory rule set governing school districts statewide.
    So I would have the same rules applying in Woodstock D200 as you have in your D200.


    1. So….your argument is that the Teachers Retirement System (TRS) and the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF) have issues… that gives you have standing in this District and has direct impact on the Jefferson School matter?

      I’m sorry your District seems to have so many issues, Perhaps you should apply your efforts there where you have bearing.


  5. I am sorry you have trouble understanding how any one school district’s profligacy has a deleterious impact on all districts in Illinois.
    Let me try to articulate my point more clearly.

    In our D200, and evidently in yours as well, there are extremely generous benefit packages for employees. The pension amount obligations are determined by locally controlled practices, such as pension spiking for example.
    So when one district creates an outsized drain on the commons— the common pool of pension funds into which we are all obligated to,pay—-all of us must pay more to restore those depleted resources.


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