Tracking the Cuts: The Dismantling of Our Public Schools

Hickory Public Schools has had to make a long list of cuts thanks to the 2013-15 education budget passed by state lawmakers.

HPS officials reported the following list of cuts to NC Policy Watch:

  • Eliminated 12 teacher assistant positions
  • Eliminated 2 administrative services clerical positions
  • Froze 1 vacant position in the technology department
  • Eliminated 1 school clerical position
  • Reduced months of employment for grounds keeper maintenance position
  • Eliminated 2 data manager positions, Southwest and Longview to share position and Oakwood and HCAM to share position
  • Teacher assistants to work student instructional days only
  • Eliminated one-half social worker position at HCAM
  • Eliminated 1.5 ESL positions
  • Eliminated 0.5 ESL interpreter position
  • Eliminated administrative curriculum coach at HCAM
  • Eliminated part-time administrative services curriculum coach
  • Reduced instructional supply allotments

Hickory Public Schools joins a growing list of school districts that have been forced to make difficult cuts as the 2013-14 school year approaches.

This just in from Wake County Public Schools:trackingCuts-web-600

WCPSS budget staff has received the district’s final budget allotments from the state and is recommending reallocating $3.5 million from other school system revenues to cover shortfalls in state funding.

The funding would carry the district through 2013-14 but will not provide a long-term solution to cover recurring reductions, Chief Business Officer David Neter said at a Board of Education work session on September 3.

“The adjustments being recommended today from one-time sources are not sustainable,” and will have to continue to be addressed next year and beyond, Neter told the board.

Overall, WCPSS saw significant state funding reductions for teachers, teacher assistants and other instructional support for 2013-14.

A large portion of these cuts was offset when state leaders also lifted a discretionary reduction, a cost-saving measure that has been in place since the recession, Neter explained. The district plans to address the remaining budget gap through savings in other areas, as well as the one-time reallocation of the $3.5 million from other school system revenues.

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

trackingCuts-web-600This week brings news of a bright spot (depending on how you look at it?) amid all of the local education budget cuts we’ve been reporting: Brunswick County educators will receive one-time, $1,000 bonuses to offset state budget cuts.

The AP reports that the Brunswick County Board of Education approved an increase in employee salary supplements and the one-time bonus during a board retreat last week. School officials say the bonuses will be paid in November.

Brunswick’s Finance Officer Freyja Cahill says the supplement schedule is competitive and will be used as a recruiting tool and to help prevent employees from leaving.

Brunswick County had to eliminate 19 teacher assistant positions this year and deal with cuts to instructional supplies.

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

trackingCuts-web-600Gaston County Schools, located just west of Charlotte, will cut 50 teacher assistant positions.

The Gaston Gazette reports that last year, the school system also cut 50 teacher assistant positions.

School officials are still trying to sort out how many of those 50 positions will be eliminated by way of attrition, and how many current TAs will receive pink slips.

Gaston County joins a growing list of school districts that have been forced to make difficult cuts as the 2013-14 school year approaches.

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trackingCuts-web-600Yesterday, the Charlotte-Mecklenberg school system released their 2013-14 budget, which includes the elimination of 220 teacher assistant positions. Teacher assistants will also experience a reduction of the number of days and hours they can work. Instructional supplies will also be cut and a planned locally-funded salary increase for teachers did not materialize.

Dennis Covington, the executive director of budget for Charlotte-Mecklenberg Schools, explained to NC Policy Watch that while the district’s school budget increased by 2.7% over last year’s, it turned out to actually be $900,000 less than CMS’ estimated 2013-14 budget, released earlier this year. State funding would have meant 396 teacher assistant positions would have been lost, but CMS was able to come up with adjustments that saved 176 positions.

Rural districts are not as well positioned as urban ones, like CMS, to come up with local funding to offset decreased state appropriations.

CMS did gain $8 million for career and technical education, but this is problematic, said Covington. “That money could pay for 100 new CTE positions, and we don’t even have a way to create and hire for that many positions in such a short period of time before school starts.” The money could not be moved to save more teaching jobs or teacher assistant jobs.

State level per pupil funding continued a downward trend from the 2008-09 school year. The state per pupil expenditure for CMS schools has decreased by 7.2% since then, according to CMS’s budget report.

Charlotte-Mecklenberg joins a growing list of school districts that have been forced to make difficult cuts as the 2013-14 school year approaches.
Burke County:
–1.35 million budget reduction;
–43.5 teaching positions eliminated;
–2 instructional support positions eliminated [The News Herald]

Charlotte-Mecklenberg Schools:
–465 teaching positions lost;
–220 teacher assistant positions lost;
–Reduced hours and days for teacher assistants;
–Reduction for instructional supplies. [CMS 2013-14 Budget Report]

Cleveland County:
–50-60 teaching positions will likely be eliminated;
–30 teacher assistant positions eliminated;
–Dozens of teacher assistants should expect reduced hours. [Shelby Star]