Trustees approve cuts for next year |

Trustees approve cuts for next year

Steve Ranson
Churchill County School District recognized Classified Employee Week, which was last week. From left are CCSD Superintendent Dr. Sandra Sheldon; Debbie Smotherman, Churchill County Middle School office manager and president of the Classified Association; and Clay Hendrix, president of the CCSD School Board.

Although budget cuts planned for the 2016-2017 are not as severe as in previous years, the Churchill County School District, nevertheless, must trim $361,100 that includes three high-school teachers.

The Churchill County School Board approved the cuts Thursday at its regularly scheduled meeting. Superintendent Dr. Sandra Sheldon said the district’s Budget Committee wrestled with ways to balance the budget for the next school year.

“It was very positive,” Sheldon said of the meetings.” A lot of ideas were exchanged.”

Originally the school district was facing a deficit on March 1 of $838,917, but Sheldon said the Insurance Committee worked with various insurance companies to receive new proposals; as a result, the school district will save $180,000 in potential employee benefit insurance savings.

Sheldon said there’s a possibility the school district may have money left over at the end of the fiscal year that ends June 30. Sheldon, though, said there could be more movement with next year’s budget because staffing changes could change final figures.

“One of my major goals was to have the school district be fiscally responsible and have a fund balance,” she said.

One of the reasons for a projected deficit for the 2016-17 school year deals with enrollment. Although the decline in enrollment is minimal, Sheldon said the school district must adjust; however, Sheldon said there would still be movement with the budget regarding staff.

The high school stands to lose one math and two English teachers, and a high-school administrator would be transferred to the Northside Early Learning Center. The position is 85 percent grant funded.

Sheldon said nothing is definite yet.

The enrollment of the high school has dropped to about 1,000 students, and Oasis Academy is planning to add a senior class next year.

Sheldon said the savings was based on if new staff replaced veteran teachers to save the district $194,688. Sheldon said three teachers would be needed with wage and benefits coming out to $64,896 for each new hire.

Reducing an IC (instructional consultation) facilitator would save $77,250 because a grant will cover expenses. On the other hand, Sheldon said the elementary grades will need at least two teachers, which the board approved.

Trustee Greg Koenig said this is the 12th year he has dealt with budget cuts. He said if the budget’s ending balance can stay within $200,000, the district may be able to balance it.

Churchill County Education Association President Becky Dodd questioned after the meeting the teaching positions being cut.

“If you are going to cut, why cut the core areas,” she said of the English and math positions.