WakeEd

The WakeEd blog is devoted to discussing and answering questions about the major issues facing the Wake County school system. How will the new student assignment plan balance diversity, stability, proximity and stability? How will Jim Merrill replace Tony Tata as the new superintendent of the state's largest district? How will voters react to a $810 million school construction bond referendum on Oct. 8 ballot? How will this fall's school board elections impact the future of the district?

WakeEd is maintained by The News & Observer's Wake schools reporter, T. Keung Hui. While Keung posts information and analysis on the issues, keep us posted on your suggestions, questions, tips and what you're doing to cope with the changes in Wake's schools.

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Budget cuts made

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Four hours later, the school board has made $39 million in cuts to the budget.

Some results include larger class sizes now more likely this fall, fewer dollars for school instructional supplies and no expansion in AG or foreign language programs. But school employees will keep their dental benefits and teachers won't have their suoplements frozen at 2007-08 dollars.

The board also took no action today on mediation after discussing it again in closed session.

UPDATE

Click here for the list of cuts presented by staff today.

Here are the changes the board made to the list to get to $39 million:

* Saved the Alternative Schools Capacity and Space

* Saved Evaluation of Prorgrams - Curriculum Management Audit

* Changed the 1 percent salary increase for non-certified employees to an increase of 0.5 percent.

* Rejected the recommendation from commissioners to add back the one-quarter percent increase to the local salary supplment for teachers.

* Eliminated the WCPSS Self-Insurance Dental Plan Increase (it's still being funded but will be from a different area)

* Eliminated freezing local supplements to the dollar value of the 2007-08 pay schedule.

* Dropped eliminating employee matching contribution to the employee dental insurance benefit.

* Changed the ADM Teacher formula for a savings of $2.5 million instead of  the proposed $3.2 million gain.

* Eliminated reduction of Intervention funding. 

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Budget Cuts?

These are not budget cuts, they are reductions in budget increases. Please N&O say it like it is. The BOE asked for 18% increase and got 6%, still higher than the rate of inflation. They have sandbagged budgets in the past using overstatements of growth that has not materialized. Waste is rampant throughout the system - just ask any teacher with the backbone to speak up. Local private schools are being built and operated at half the cost of WCPSS schools with low tuition of $5k-$6k compared to the $14,000 or so spent on each child annually in Wake County. It's the same old liberal, big-government ploy: ask for more than you need, then scream bloody murder when you have to settle for less.

what the public needs to know...

It just makes me mad to see them make cuts in the areas that directly affect the teachers and students in the school.
Instructional supplies...it's already hard to buy those things already, especially since the WCPSS warehouse doesn't handle individual needs anymore...you have to buy in bulk. I am sorry, but I don't need to spend money purchasing 15 packs of 100 sheets of red contruction paper. A few yers back, you use to be able to buy 1 or 2 packs or whatever your need was.
Custodial issues, don't get me started on that. I just don't think people want to work anylonger. The dust, the trash and floors are awful. I was so disgusted by the floor in the room at the end of the year...there's no telling the last time it had REALLY been mopped.
Cut in programs, like we need that. I would be ashamed if I were in the position that some of them are in to cut programs. Especially those with salaries near/at/above 100K! Magnet schools, get a buget for teacher supplies needed...but they gets less and less each year. This year the budget was close to $1,600...LOL... yes people I typed that in correct...sixteen hundred dollars to use to buy supplies and materials to support the program. The whole school, every teacher has to share this little amount. It's sad. I then have to use my classroom instructional supply money at times to purchase things for my elective classes. You can write a request for magnet money( the 1.600) but first come first serve and also depending on the real need for the rest...all factors in if you will get some money or not. As you can figure out...that money doesn't last very long. It doesn't take long for the $1600 to dwindle down to $0.
It just sickens me to see the cuts they make for the "budget" but will never make a cut in upper management! BOE...have the nerve to make sure their gas milage stay in place....YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF YOURSELF!

Revising the Budget....

They submitted a BLOATED budget to begin with, filled with lots of empty promises, and based on previous years performance they have never, ever, delivered, nor made any of their "goals."
Bottom Line -- they got 6% more than last year. How many of you got pay raises that high, nor saw your own departments get that much of an increase? The WCPSS is addicted to spending our money.
http://www.talkingaboutpolitics.com/Home/tabid/36/ctl/ArticleView/mid/364/articleId/1252/The-School-Board-in-a-36-Million-Huff.aspx

budget

Some one should check the use of convenience contracts being used in WCPSS technology section. A few contractors getting all the work even when their bid was higher than other bids. Talk about fishy.

I don't get why they say

I don't get why they say that local teacher supplements would be frozen to 2007-2008 rates when those rates were frozen to 2006-2007. IF they had frozen supplements, it would have been the second year in a row. I am not complaining but I would just like the facts stated.  Of course, as a teacher, I am glad they are not frozen.

what the public needs to

what the public needs to realize is that the CC's are not the only ones to blame, its was the WCPSS who came up with what to cut from where.....in other words, it was Del & Friends who threw them under the bus, there were other places to cut from, but they chose, instructional supplies, AG and foreign language etc..

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About the blogger

T. Keung Hui covers Wake schools.
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