- Lake Oswego School District
LOSD Voters Pass Lake Oswego School Levy Measure 3-592 May 16, 2023
Renewing Lake Oswego School Levy Protects Educational Excellence Without Raising Local Property Tax Rate
Lake Oswego, OR - May 16, 2023 - Lake Oswego School District voters passed Measure 3-592, with 72.2% of ballots cast in favor of the local option school levy in the Special Election May 16, 2023. Renewing the levy protects class sizes, educator positions, instructional days, and elective programming in LOSD without increasing the current property tax rates.
The levy provides LOSD with approximately 15 percent of its annual general operating budget, funding the equivalent of one-third of all teaching positions in the district. The levy will renew at the same rate as the five-year local option school levy approved by voters in May 2019, which expires on June 30, 2024.
“On behalf of educators, staff, and current and past school board members who serve in the Lake Oswego School District, I am honored to extend a heartfelt thank you to our community for its steadfast support of our schools,” said Dr. Jennifer Schiele, Superintendent of LOSD. “Passing the levy is a big win for our students, protecting educational excellence by funding essential resources. Without our community's support, we would not have our level of staffing or quality of programming to help students thrive in school and life.”
Funding Educational Excellence
Renewing the operating levy protects and continues to fund educator positions that preserve class sizes; single-grade elementary classrooms; the current number of school days; elective programming opportunities such as music, art, engineering, and technology; and mental health supports for students’ wellbeing.
Measure 5 fundamentally changed Oregon’s public school funding in 1990, eventually reducing LOSD’s operating budget by more than 30 percent. In 1999, state law gave individual communities the ability to supplement state funding for their local schools. LOSD voters first approved the local option levy in 2000, allowing the district to add back some educational opportunities previously eliminated. LOSD voters have since approved a local option levy in 2004, 2008, 2013, 2019, and 2023.
“We are grateful for the support of our Lake Oswego community. The passing of the levy helps ensure our schools are given the resources necessary to continue leading the state and being amongst the top in the nation for excellence and achievement. It is inspiring to see our community unite for our students,” said Lake Oswego School Board Chair Neelam Gupta.
Resources funded by the levy support LOSD’s educational standards. LOSD and its teachers are ranked the best in Oregon by Niche. In its annual 2022 school rankings report, US News and World Reports ranked Lake Oswego and Lakeridge High Schools in the top 5 percent of all high schools in the nation. LOSD ranked the highest academic achievement and growth in grades K-12 and graduated the highest percentage of students in four years of all large comprehensive K-12 school districts in Oregon, per Oregon Department of Education 2021 reporting.
Maintaining Tax Rate
Beginning in July 2024, property owners will continue to pay the same tax rate as the current local option school levy of $1.64 per $1,000 of assessed value. The owner of a home assessed at $500,000 would continue to pay a maximum of approximately $68 per month or $820 per year for the local option school levy.
Local option levy funding, and all LOSD finances and expenditures, are subject to accountability measures, including regular annual audits and Lake Oswego School Board oversight to ensure funds are used as intended. All revenue generated by the levy renewal will continue to support Lake Oswego School District and its students.
Election officials are scheduled to certify the May 16, 2023, election results by June 12, 2023.
Lake Oswego School District is the top large K-12 comprehensive public school district in Oregon, with a learning community dedicated to creating a culture of belonging and educational excellence. LOSD has been rated the best school district in Oregon, and among the top in America, for decades. The LOSD learning community comprises approximately 6,800 students and their families served by appropriately 850 educators and staff members in 11 schools. LOSD is a suburban district located approximately 10 miles south of Portland, Oregon. Lake Oswego is recognized for its natural beauty, sense of community, and excellent schools.