This is hardly a recipe for high quality education! We must ensure that our classrooms are well-funded and that there are opportunities for professional development for our educators.
WCPSS Chief Business Officer David Neter presented a first look at the Superintendent’s Proposed 2013 – 2014 Budget at the March 5, 2013 Board meeting. The School Board approved that budget, with adjustments, at its May 7, 2013 meeting.
The Wake County Public School System is the second largest employer in the county. For fiscal year 2012-13, the total proposed budget is $1.38 billion. Of that figure, $1.248 billion represents the operating budget. The remaining $71 million represents the operating budget for the school building program that is funded through taxpayer bonds.
The $1.38 billion proposed budget includes a request for an additional $8.3 million from the County ($8/per student) to help cover costs associated with expansion of the magnet program, STEM and leadership academies, Common Core professional development for teachers, additional teacher hiring to reduce class sizes, funding to phase in Technology Facilitators at our elementary schools, and other initiatives. The proposed budget avoids reductions in staffing, but Neter warned of “unknowns” that might impact the budget, including: sequestration, utility rate changes, and a state discretionary budget reduction increase. The proposed budget assumes that there will be an additional 3,000 students in 2013-14.
A public hearing on the budget will be scheduled in the spring. The budget will be discussed further in Board work sessions, with a goal of adopting a final budget at the Board meeting on May 7, 2013.
Here is a year-to-year summary comparison of the 2013-14 proposed and 2012-13 WCPSS approved budgets:
|Total Budget (billions)||1.38||1.396|
|Total Operating Budget (billions)||1.308||1.248|
What’s the Budget Cycle?
- The Superintendent shall prepare an annual budget and submit it with a budget message to the Board of Education (BOE) not later than April 15.
- The BOE shall hold at least one public hearing on the proposed budget prior to final action.
- The BOE must submit the entire approved budget to the Board of Commissioners (BOC) not later than May 15 (or such later date as may be fixed by the BOC. The BOC shall complete action on the school budget on or before July 1, or such later date as may be agreeable to the BOE.
- If adoption of the budget is delayed until after July 1, the Board shall make interim appropriations for the purpose of paying salaries and the usual ordinary expenses of the school system for the interval between the beginning of the fiscal year and the adoption of the budget resolution.
What You Can Do to Advocate for Funding
- Review the Superintendent’s 2013-2014 Proposed Budget and the adjustments made to the Proposed Budget (submitted to the Wake County Board of Commissioners)
- Speak up at Board of Education meetings and public hearings
- Attend a Board of Commissioners budget presentation, participate in a public hearing