The new fiscal year begins July 1.
Approximately $139 million will be spent for local education in 2010, $5 million less than this year.
Cuts during 2009 totaled about 3 percent.
“I feel more prepared going into next year,” said Floyd County Schools Superintendent Lynn Plunkett. “Certainly at this point last year nobody had any idea we would receive the kind of budget cuts that we did.”
Some of the cuts will carry over into FY 2010, including austerity reductions, but will be offset by federal grant stimulus money. The state will be paying Quality Basic Education (QBE) dollars through money received from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
“This is a constantly changing process,” said Floyd County Schools financial director Chris Toles about the FY 2010 budget. “At the state they changed us five times during the (FY 2009) year, and I’ve never known that to happen before.”
Instruction, which includes teacher salaries, benefits and textbooks, makes up the largest portion of both school systems’ budgets. The state mandates school systems spend at least 65 percent of their budget on instruction.
Since instruction is such a significant part of the budget, for FY 2010 both systems cut teaching and administrative positions. They were able to handle those cuts through retirements and attrition, but if there are further budget reductions personnel may be affected through job cuts or furlough days.
“Because the governor changed the maximum class size this year, and essentially raised it by two students per classroom, we’ve projected we will need 12 fewer teachers (in FY 2010),” said Rome City Superintendent Gayland Cooper.
This year all salaries across the state were frozen under the direction of Gov. Sonny Perdue.
“Nobody expects to get raises this year, and we are all just thankful to have jobs,” said Cooper.
The Floyd County school system has 21 schools and has a proposed budget for FY 2010 of $94 million. The school board is expected to vote on its budget Tuesday at 4 p.m.
Rome City has 11 schools and expects to spend $44.2 million. The Rome Board of Education is scheduled to meet at 7:30 a.m. June 29 to vote on the budget, which must also be approved by the Rome City Commission.
School funding Rome City Schools:
Total Expenditures: $44,264,216
Total Revenue: $43,564,216 Floyd County Schools:
Total Expenditures: $94,568,414 million
Total Revenue: $94,548,111 million