Tracking the Cuts: The Dismantling of Our Public Schools

Asheville City Schools loses funds for 13 teacher assistants

trackingCuts-web-600Asheville City Schools reported to NC Policy Watch that they lost funding for 13 teacher assistant teacher positions for 2013-14.

The school system was able to find local funds for 3.5 of those teacher assistant jobs, but ultimately had to eliminate 9.5 positions.

“We hope to restore those [eliminated positions] as soon as possible…we are scrubbing our budget to look for savings,” said Charlie Glazener, ACS’ Executive Director for Community Relations.

Check out our growing list of school districts that have been forced to make difficult cuts for the 2013-14 school year.

18 Comments

  1. LayintheSmakDown

    September 9, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    Considering they can throw away $175,000 on a non-required gift to a retiring superintendent, then their assertion that they do not have funds is dishonest at best. The localities have a HUGE say in whether they allocate their portion of the INCREASE in funding from the state to the classroom….or play media games like they are poor. This really casts a poor light on most school systems in the state.

    http://www.ashevilledailyplanet.com/opinion/3042-daily-planets-opinion-city-schools-idiocracy

    http://www.citizen-times.com/article/20130518/NEWS/305170051/City-schools-chief-not-owed-buyout?nclick_check=1
    http://www.blackmountainnews.com/article/20130908/NEWS/309080070/Questions-linger-Johnson-departure

    Plus they have about $5.1 MILLION in fund balance which is 34.67% of their expenditures. They have a lot of slush in there to defer any phantom “cuts”.

  2. LayintheSmakDown

    September 9, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    And greggy…before you spout off some dry GASB pronouncement you need to actaully maybe add some value and research how much of that is encumbered by law. Granted they look a bit better than Hickory in that they are only 35% over funded….but that still seems huge when many government entites are at approximately 10%

  3. Alan

    September 9, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    And not a single comment from LayDownTheCrackPipe about the cost of school vouchers….

  4. LayintheSmakDown

    September 9, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    Well Al, I can comment

    1. There is no cost….those students get educated elsewhere. If anything the schools make out like bandits as the full ~$9,000 per student does not follow them so the government schools first do not have to educate that person…then get to allocate that per pupil amount across their student population.

    2. If you really take into account the few private schools anyway, it is a negligible number on a per system wide basis. Per WRAL, there are about 98,000 private school students vs. approximately 1.5 MILLION government school students. Taking what? $4,000 of the funds allocated is about $392,000,000 that the government schools get to keep without having to administer an education to those students. I would take that deal.
    http://www.wral.com/news/local/story/5254290/
    http://www.ncpublicschools.org/docs/fbs/resources/data/factsfigures/2012-13figures.pdf

    3. The main reason the school systems do not like this is that it takes the power out of their hands. If there is anything the government likes more than money, it is power over it’s citizens. Every seat in a private school is a chance that the child will not be indoctrinated into the progressive agenda. The dollars are just a tangental issue since they get to keep a large portion already for themselves.

  5. ncborn

    September 9, 2013 at 6:53 pm

    Dear Lay(etc.) — The school board paid out his contract; it was a management decision. By the way, you might ask how many people the McCrory administration has had to pay out in order to replace them. I understand there have been several people the administration had to enter financial settlements with because the new team didn’t follow the State Personnel Act in removing them from jobs they had under the Perdue administration.

  6. gregflynn

    September 9, 2013 at 9:53 pm

    Dear Mr. Douglas “LSD” Hankey, if by your comments we are to judge school districts by their relationship to the average I would have to judge your comments as less than average by their relationship to the truth. There are 115 school districts in NC. There are 100 counties. Asheville and Hickory, being cities, not counties, are among 15 small municipal school districts. Comparisons with each other would be more appropriate than with counties statewide.

    The fund balance, as you have been repeatedly informed, is not a “slush fund”. It is a diligent measure of ability to meet obligations by government entities with intermittent, as opposed to constant, revenue.

    Since, upon information and belief, you are of the opinion that few people read this blog it seems peculiar that you devote so much of your limited time and intellectual resources to lamentation, obfuscation and derogatorization of such a small audience. Some might call you an example of the extreme right-wing. I disagree – you are a barely average example of the depravity of the right.

  7. Alan

    September 9, 2013 at 10:33 pm

    Or, as LayDownTheCrackPipe would like to spin it:

    ‘Asheville City Schools loses hires an extra 113 teacher assistants”. That’s exactly what the NCGA 4.8% increase in spending was intended to do, increase the amount of government workers, isn’t it Doogie….

    Up is down, down is up….GOP ‘logic’ at work.

  8. LayintheSmakDown

    September 10, 2013 at 11:23 am

    Al,
    I think by your logic the up/down relationship is skewed. When you are up more than inflation+school enrollment (as I have detailed over the past few months) you are coming out WELL ahead of the curve. All this posturing about “destroying and dismantling” is the time tested line by the administrators to keep their dollars and power flowing. I have seen it in action for decades in multiple districts in NC as well as now at the state level, and it is not only applicable to schools but any government entity.

    The general strategy is :
    1. Submit a pie in the sky budget that you know is unrealistic
    2. Get a reasonable (in this case a richly funded) budget handed to you
    3. Make “cuts” from the pie in the sky budget, but only to areas that cause the best headlines and stir up the most perceived pain (ie teachers, TA’s etc)
    4. Preserve rich administrative positons since those are where our buddies are
    5. Media picks up like the automatons they are because they do not agree with the political party in power
    6. Low information progressive crowd bites hook line and sinker without actually thinking about reality…then goes on to click more Miley Cyrus twerking videos.
    7 Faux outrage on progressive sites…..because you know it was all cool when our guys were doing even more drastic cuts.

    And greggy, call it what you want…..but a good portion of a 67% of expenditures fund balance is full of slush…or you can call it pork if you like.

  9. Alan

    September 10, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    LSD/Doogie,

    The only people you are apparently convincing is (a) yourself, (b) Civitas, and (c) the GOP.

    Your persistant reflexive defense of all things this admin does is what we expect you to do, it’s what you’re employed to do. I think you can get medication for the obvious paranoia you’re sufferring from, not to mention the persecution complex.

    PS. I did like your ”low information progressive” comment, that was funny. So why is it the vast majority of educated people don’t support your team or its policies? I must give credit to the GOP where it is due, they are after all, experts at manipulating the uneducated & uninformed.

  10. gregflynn

    September 10, 2013 at 2:14 pm

    Local Government Budgeting Options when Revenue Streams are Uncertain – UNC School of Government

    Fund Balance Reporting Policy – NC Office of State Controller

    Benchmarking and Municipal Reserve Funds: Theory Versus Practice

    The very term “fund balance,” however, is often misunderstood. Some common misconceptions are that fund balance is a “savings account,” an amount of surplus cash, or in less kind terms, a “slush fund.” In fact, fund balance is nothing more than an accounting construct. It is the difference between a governmental fund’s current assets—cash, short-term investments, inventories, receivables, and other unrestricted assets expected to be available to finance operations in the immediate future—and its current liabilities. A positive difference of current assets over current liabilities gives an indication of the resources immediately available to finance ongoing operations.

    – Institute for Public Service and Policy Research, USC

  11. Alex

    September 10, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    It’s funny but every time flynn gives us one of his long dissertations that I usually get thoroughly bored with before getting to the end, then Alan immediately chimes in with his usual attack on poor Dougie. Do these guys work together or something, or are they the same person ? I can’t figure it out but it’s almost like Abbott and Costello! ” Who’s on First “

  12. Alan

    September 10, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    Alex,

    I’m glad I didn’t disappoint you. Two different people (unlike Doogie aka LayDownTheCrackPipe). I really wish I could be on first, but LSD seems to get there before me almost every time with his prepared statements from Civitas.

  13. LayintheSmakDown

    September 10, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    Alex,
    That is one of their M.O.’s. The more words they print the more likely they will fool their “low information” crowd into thinking their comment has any substance.

    I have one more link to share on how far from “devastated” or “dismantled” the schools are. The school districts are paying into a PAC to lobby. Well…..this is a budget “cut” that could definitely not affect the classroom. Let’s see $10,000 times 100+ school districts is $1,000,000. That is 1/400 of their huge 4.8% increase in 2013 budget.

    http://www.beaufortobserver.net/Articles-NEWS-and-COMMENTARY-c-2013-09-09-268752.112112-School-boards-asked-to-use-public-money-to-support-lobbying.html

  14. Alan

    September 10, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    LSD,

    A full time blogger on the payroll of Civitas…

  15. gregflynn

    September 11, 2013 at 11:20 am

  16. LayintheSmakDown

    September 11, 2013 at 1:30 pm

    I really wish I was paid to troll you guys, but all I get are the giggles from the poorly crafted responses….that and the sleep inducing effect of greggy’s posts.

  17. LayintheSmakDown

    September 11, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    thanks for the link to the memo greggy. Although at this point is is moot as get this…….a great number of the school boards, like Statesville below, already have their own HIGHER priced lobbying efforts. This thing only gets deeper as we go.

    http://www.statesville.com/news/education/article_722f0812-1590-11e3-be9a-0019bb30f31a.html

  18. gregflynn

    September 11, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    I think you’re amused because you don’t know what the hell you are talking about. The article you linked to even said fees for the NCSBA 501(c)4 were on a sliding scale. In fact 50 school districts would have a fee of $2,000, not the $10,000 you claim and the NCSBA link clearly shows a lower budget. $2,000 is about a week’s wages for Pat McCrory’s Communications Director.