Fayette School board looks at state funding issues

Mon, 02/15/2010 - 8:05am
By: Ben Nelms

The negative effect of the recessionary economy is a constant topic these days for the Fayette County School Board.

A report last week by Comptroller Laura Brock showed that additional proposed cuts by Gov. Sonny Perdue for the remainder of the fiscal year, if approved by the General Assembly, could mean a loss of $2.8 million in areas such as staff wages, transportation and nursing services.

Estimated potential cuts for January forward totaled $1,276,490 as a result of another proposed three-day furlough and $1,267,046 from a 1.5 percent budget cut, for a total of $2.544 million.

Potentially added to those numbers would be $182,262 for the elimination of bus replacement funds, $58,900 from a 4 percent cut to other transportation items and $13,950 from a 4 percent cut to nursing services, Brock said.

If enacted by the General Assembly on the governor’s recommendation, the total austerity cut in the Quality Basic Education (QBE) formula would total $15,197,462, Brock said, adding that the school system begin the fiscal year with $8.8 million in austerity cuts.

Brock said that even with little or no staff turnover the personnel budget would likely increase by approximately $1.617 million due to steps increases in pay for employee longevity. She said 841 teachers would be affected by step increases while another 803 would not.

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Submitted by g8trgrl on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 3:39pm.

When is the Board going to be presented with how much savings the merge of middle and high school kids on buses will bring? I want to go to that meeting to hear this. With the high school day being extended to match the middle school day, I am sure the potential for savings is there. I don't agree with middle and high school kids riding buses together, but when has the board ever listened to a tax payer? I can only imagine the car pool lines at the middle schools next year.

I wish the hours for the middle school could be shortened, instead of high school hours being extended. I hear the high school kids will have 1 hour for lunch, that seems like a waste of time.

Submitted by g8trgrl on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 4:18pm.

I heard that from a teacher at Starr's Mill HS, not sure what their source was for that info. I hope it's not true. The kids will waste the time. The teachers could use it, I know. Middle school kids and high school kids on a a bus together?? I just think having 11 year-old's and 15 year-old's on the same bus is a big age span to have together. It is only my opinion. I know a lot of parents who will not let their middle school kids ride the bus NOW, with only middle school on it. I see the drop-off line and pick-up line now every day, so I think it will only worsen. I am sure the cost savings will be substantial. I say lose the Chief/Starr time at middle school and shorten their day.

When will the board vote on this?

Submitted by wildcat on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 9:23pm.

Yes, that is a big age span, but most 15 year old kids aren't interested in picking on an 11 year old, if it is bullying you're thinking of. You are correct about the middle school lines...they are always packed, aren't they? If you try to pick up your kid early for an ortho appt you have to get there an hour before school lets out just to get into the parking lot! The cars are snaked through the lot and down the street. It's insane.

S. Lindsey's picture
Submitted by S. Lindsey on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 4:44pm.

check your email

The liberties of a people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them. ~~Patrick Henry
"Illegitimus non Corborundum"

Submitted by jevank on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 8:53pm.

I'll call you tomorrow.

S. Lindsey's picture
Submitted by S. Lindsey on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 9:07pm.

If I don't answer leave a message. I will call you back..

The liberties of a people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them. ~~Patrick Henry
"Illegitimus non Corborundum"

Submitted by wildcat on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 4:07pm.

hahahahahahah!!! I wish!!! No. We will still have 30 minutes and that includes retrieving your lunch (if you don't have it on you or have to buy it), running to the rr to wash your hands and you have even less time to eat if you actually have to go to the bathroom!! God forbid you need to return a parent phone call......no lunch for you!

The extra time will come before or after school. I've heard that they are leaning towards starting at 8:20 instead of 8:40. That will make for some really short parent and/or IEP meetings. Oh well, society is becoming rather streamlined, isn't it? Schools should follow suit!

As for middle and high on the bus together....my kids did it in the 90s (in this county) and they seem to be ok. No mental/emotional damage. The high school I attended (in NJ) went from 7th grade to 12th grade (all in the same building) and we all rode the bus together. Again...no mental suffering on my end. Why, if you don't mind my asking, do you not agree with that?

Submitted by Dondol on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 4:12pm.

You seem to be in the know so can you tell me why our wonderful BOE is contemplating this extension to the school day? Are they going to shorten the number of days that the kids attend? If you can help me to understand this.

Submitted by wildcat on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 9:03pm.

There is now an article in the paper regarding the whole set-up. I think it was posted about 5:00 this afternoon. The article should answer most of your questions.

Submitted by ginga1414 on Tue, 02/16/2010 - 11:57am.

Yep. Think about all the millions the BOE, teachers, staff, and, most importantly, the students would have now if only the BOE hadn't built Rivers Elementary.

And, while we are at it, just think about this. Our current economic downturn, recession, period of financial embarrassment, dare I say depression, isn't over yet. All of this is hind sight and I guess the BOE never heard of saving for a rainy day.

It sure would be nice if our county commissioners could take a page from the BOE book and kill the $51,000,000 West Fayetteville Bypass. Maybe they think that if they build the thing that somehow miraculously the economy will turn around and John Wieland, Fayette Builders, Green Development, Waterlace, Dan Stinchcomb, and ARC Enterprises will be able to go to The Bank of Georgia and get the money to build their houses which will sell and then they will have the students to fill Rivers Elementary. Our county commissioners told members of the WFBC that would not try to purchase homeowners' property until they had the Federal 404 Permit. That was a lie. They haven't even applied for the Permit and they have already purchased property and made under the table deals to purchase other property. They have made promises to homeowners that they would receive money for their homes and still be able to live in those homes for another two years.

Once again, it is just putting the cart before the horse. Just like building Rivers Elementary without the students to fill the classrooms and putting in crosswalks and walk/don't walk signals along STATE HIGHWAYS. But that's alright, according to Jack Smith the WFB is a "done deal." Rivers Elementary is a "done deal," too. The country's financial problems are also a "done deal." Save for a rainy day, Jack, Eric, Lee, Herb and Robert. But, then again, you don't have to save this county's money for a rainy day because you've always got the taxpayers to foot your crazy ideas whether they want to or not.

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