At Tuesday’s meeting, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools board looked at the superintendent’s recommended local budget for 2015-16.
This initial proposed budget totals $73 million. Once board members hash out the details, they will request funds from Orange County commissioners. The proposed budget will require a 3 cent property tax increase.
School officials are calculating a local budget while taking into account the state budget, the final version of which is yet to be determined.
The state projects enrollment decreasing by 150 students next year. This means the district will lose at least half a million dollars in funding.
The proposed local budget for next year is about $4 million more than the current year’s budget. Federal and state mandates account for some of this difference. For example, under Gov. Pat McCrory’s budget proposal, minimum teacher pay would rise 6 percent to $35,000.
“Generally the state provides funding for classroom teachers and a few instructional support type positions, like a guidance councilor or media specialist,” said Assistant Superintendent Todd LoFrese in an interview after the meeting.
Local dollars will have to meet these minimum salary mandates for other types of school employees.
“We have other positions in our schools: literacy coaches, math coaches, and technology facilitators,” said LoFrese. “Positions like that – that aren’t funded by the state, but we feel are critical for our success – we fund locally.”
School officials will likely ask county commissioners to help pay for more charter school students and home-schooled children who enroll in North Carolina’s first virtual charter schools.
Here are upcoming budget calendar dates from CHCCS:
March 19 – Public Hearing and budget work session
April 16 – Budget discussion and approval of budget to be submitted to the County
April 20 – Submit Board’s budget request to County
April 28 – Joint meeting of school boards for budget presentations to County