Tracking the Cuts: The Dismantling of Our Public Schools

trackingCuts-web-600Wilkes County Schools reports that they have had to cut eight teaching positions, seven teacher assistant positions, three media assistants and 1.5 central office positions.

Wilkes’ Superintendent Dr. Marty Hemric told the Wilkes Journal-Patriot that thanks to state budget cuts over the past five years, the school district has lost of over 100 school positions, including 51 teacher assistants (from 126 in 2008-09 to 75 now), 35 certified teachers (from 484 ½ in 2008-09 to 449.25 now), 15½ central office administrative positions and three media assistants.

Even more positions would have been lost since 2008 if the Wilkes school system hadn’t been able to use federal funds provided through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (also known as stimulus funding) and the Race To The Top initiative to compensate for cuts in state and local funding.

Wilkes County Schools joins a growing list of school districts that have been forced to make difficult cuts for the 2013-14 school year thanks to reductions in state-level education spending.

trackingCuts-web-600Add Vance County Schools to the list — they’ve had to cut eight teaching positions and 12 teacher assistant positions for 2013-14.

Terri Hedrick, Public Information Officer for VCS, reports:

  • Cut teaching positions by eight positions
  • Cut teacher assistant positions by 12 positions
  • No layoffs have occurred; through attrition the teacher assistants have been placed in other positions; we simply did not fill eight vacant teaching positions
  • We were cut $572,643 in state funds for teaching positions
  • We were cut $468,134 in state funds for teacher assistant positions
  • We were cut $105,212 in state funds for instructional support positions (placed in other positions, i.e., assistant principals/lead teachers)
  • We were cut $32,395 in state funds for classroom materials
  • Our total state budget cuts from last year to the new school year totaled $333,257

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

Stan Winborne of Granville County Schools reported to NC Policy Watch that they have had to eliminate 35 positions for 2013-14, although no one had to be laid off. They have also tried their best to reduce the negative impact on their students in the classroom.

The eliminated positions include:

4 Administrative positions
15 Instructional Support positions
8 Classroom Teacher positions
4 Classroom Teacher positions eliminated but services maintained through other means
4 Classroom Teacher positions planned but not filled

These cuts equal approximately $1.75 million dollars for the 2013-2014 school year.

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

trackingCuts-web-600Angela Henry, CFO for Guilford County Schools (GCS), sent NC Policy Watch a full accounting of all of the cuts GCS has had to make as a result of state budget reductions and the accumulation of reductions in state funding over the last several years:

  • Increased class size by .25 =  a reduction of 37 teaching positions;
  • Eliminated $5.1 million in funding schools use for tutoring /instructional supplies/professional development/summer programs;
  • Eliminated mentor pay for teachers serving as mentors of first year teachers;
  • Eliminated seven middle school literacy facilitator positions; and
  • Reduced days of employment for teacher assistants and other paraprofessionals by 2.5 days.

Fortunately, GCS was able to place all impacted employees into vacant positions, so layoffs were not required.

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

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.