Fact: If the proposed county budget stands, Moore County Schools will have to cut 32 jobs by August in addition to limiting academic, athletic and social opportunities for our kids.
Fact: There’s only one public hearing to address the commissioners directly on this budget. Maximum attendance is needed to get their attention and demonstrate widespread support for Fully Funded Schools.
Tuesday, June 6, 5:30pm (speakers sign up by 5:25pm)
Historic Carthage Courthouse
I educate and encourage and organize, but I cannot be the only voice the commissioners hear. You need to attend. Please see this through to the end.
My most recent summary on the budget status is below. Feel free to share this email and contact me with any questions.
Parents For Moore
Whew that Board of Ed meeting was chock full of info. The Pilot has had a few good articles so far which you should read. I wanted to give my take of the budget part here.
First let me say I am no financial whiz and not an MCS staffer, so my opinions are my own. However, I have spent the last 6 years with my nose in MCS business because of the funding deficits I saw. I stood up for Dr. Bob in the midst of those years because I thought the situation was wrong – not because of any personal loyalty to him. He and his staff are incredibly thorough in their research and planning – which is not to say I agree 100% with all decisions, but enough to keep fighting. My loyalty is to my kids and OUR community kids in Moore and I have been paying attention. The incredible value and education my 2 kids are getting is second to none in this county. If I truly thought alternative schools in Moore or my own home offered better, I’d go. And loudly. This is still true and I continue to fight.
The good news is that hundreds of county people have spoken up about the funding crisis in education. I personally have traveled Moore to explain this is mostly a man-made disaster courtesy of Raleigh (see here for the details of that). Unfortunately, moving the mountain of politics in the state house is slow. Thousands of people just like us are on their case too, but it will take an election to show legislators if they’re not working for public education, they’re out. They put off (NOT FIXED) most of the class size reduction expenses for one year (delaying the loss of 11 teachers, 3 school nurses, 8 digital education facilitators, 2 IT techs, 1 psychologist/social worker, & 1 school counselor for one year). No new funds or fix are in place for next year.
Now the bad news. Until the screws in Raleigh can be undone, our public schools still need funding by August. That means the commissioners’ county budget. That means our schools need our money. I’ve heard from every corner of this society that they are willing, but we don’t make the budget. The commissioners need to hear it again since they do. Here’s why: the proposed budget from the county shifts $1,502,060 from other county school funds (Peter? Paul?), while it adds only $559,777 in new funds. That’s good. It just simply isn’t enough to prevent known cuts (unknown what Raleigh will do in their budget for this year which, by the way, doesn’t come out until late summer and makes up 2/3 of expected MCS funding).
In addition to previous years’ cuts MCS has recently cut 2 maintenance techs, 1 accountability & research admin. assistant, 1 communication specialist, 1 communications admin. assistant, and the grants administrator.
So here’s what else we’ll lose unless we do more. In general order of certainty of being cut:
• Local teacher curriculum design program
• Funds for digital licenses/content and textbooks
• Planned expansion of digital learning to grades 3,4,5 with devices and 1 add’l staff
• Funds to repair/maintain current facilities
• 2 more maintenance techs
• 1 school police officer (SRO)
• Night-evening maintenance staffing (broken pipe after hours??)
• 2 lead instructional coaches (teachers who teach teachers)
• Teacher and staff continuing education courses (needed to keep teaching license)
• 8 media tech assistants (techs who fix teachers’/kids’ computers)
• Curriculum and instruction head
• 5 teacher assistant workdays
• Supplies funding to each school
• Maintenance funding to each school
• 2.5 school receptionists (brrring..brrring…)
• 9 custodians
• Human resources admin. assistant
• Payroll admin. assistant
• 1 high school athletic trainer
• 2 assistant principals
If any of these cuts sound like nothings to you, ask a teacher, administrator or staff member who will now be doing the extra work. Remember these cuts when the phone rings off the hook and emails aren’t returned because teachers/admin/staff are too busy with “nothings”. Remember these cuts when things break and take a long time to be fixed or when you are asked to bring in more supplies. Not what you want? Me neither. Let’s DO SOMETHING.
The proposed county commissioners’ budget is out. June 6, 5:30 at the Carthage Historic Courthouse is the only public hearing on their plan. Each signed in speaker gets 3 minutes, with a cumulative time limit of 2 hours. If you’ve ever showed up to a community talk, a previous commissioner or BOE meeting, read the paper or anything put out by Parents for Moore, then you have an interest in attending. If you own property, a business, work or live in Moore and/or care about the quality of our community, then you have an interest in attending. Representative government only works if we communicate what we expect, clearly and often. Here is the commissioners’ contact info to call or write as well. Help them represent us. Show up June 6th.
Since 2008, Moore County Schools has been on the receiving end of countless state education budget cuts. Each year, we have seen a reduction in staff, resources, and facility maintenance resulting in a school system operating with the bare minimum to meet state and federal requirements. Additionally, MCS has had to utilize the 12 million dollar fund balance ( now left at just one million) in an attempt to offset multiple cuts and to KEEP TEACHERS IN CLASSROOMS. We no longer have a “security blanket” that will save us from the latest rounds of cuts and all that we have left to take are what the state considers “extras” – art, music, theater, and sports – or lose even more positions as a trade off.
DID YOU KNOW?
- MCS used to have teacher assistants in EVERY CLASSROOM in Grades K-5 and they weren’t shared between classes.
- MCS used to have separate buses for elementary, middle, and high schools, greatly reducing the time students spent on buses and allowing for closer start times for all campuses.
- MCS had more janitorial and support staff on each campus allowing teachers to focus on educating their students rather than perform administrative duties.
- MCS used to have Orchestra for students in Grades 3-5.
- MCS used to have Year Round Elementary School in Pinehurst, West End, and Southern Pines.
- MCS used to provide every incoming kindergarten student with an activity kit during enrollment that included scissors, crayons, and activities to help them be successful on first day of school.
- MCS used to provide adequate funding for administrative costs, providing basic supplies to classroom teachers such as copy paper and teaching resources.
- MCS used to provide actual texbooks and subject resources for students in all grades.
- MCS used to offer the International Baccalaureate Program at Southern Middle School and Pinecrest High School.
- MCS used to have enough Assistant Principals, School Counselors, Special Education Teachers, and AIG Teachers so that schools didn’t need to share administrative staff.
- MCS used to have enough funds to provide the arts and PE teachers with money to resource their classrooms instead of expecting these teachers to be “self-sustaining” through outside fundraisers and donations.
So, when you ask how can the Board of Education consider cutting teachers, staff, the arts and sports?
Well, what’s left?
WE NEED ALL PARENTS TO SPEAK UP!
If our state leaders, Sen. Tillman, Rep. Boles, and Rep. McNeill, will not defend public education at the state level and continue to support public money being transferred to for-profit charter and private schools, things will not improve. At this point, Moore County has one choice – FULLY FUND OUR OWN SCHOOLS. For eight years, the County Commissioners have waited for the state to take corrective action to fix public education funding while advocating on behalf of MCS. Unfortunately, nothing has changed. So we, as a community, must step up and take personal responsibility for each child in our school system. Our County Commissioners will need to be the voice of our students and let them know they are valued by ensuring that each student gets a quality education not a minimal one.
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
- Educate yourself on the past budget issues and where our school system is today
- Mar. 6th -Dr. Bob presented a 5 year budget for MCS. Slides here: https://www.ncmcs.org/Page/8645. Full video here: https://www.ncmcs.org/Page/8656 .
- April 3rd 12:30pm – BOE work session (no public comment); attend or view here: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/mcs-administration
- April 10th at 6:30 pm – Board of Education regular meeting; public speaking sign up by 6:25 pm
- Review the Board of Education Class Size Resolution sent to our state leaders
- Review Dr. Bob’s “ideal” budget presented at the Feb.6 Board of Education Work Session MCS Feb 6 2017 Work Session
- Schedule a Budget Talk to learn about how are school’s are funded and what MCS’s budget looks like.
- CALL and WRITE our State Leaders and County Commissioners. Let them know that education matters to Moore County.
- Click here for a list of email address and telephone numbers of BOE, State Leaders, and County Commissioners.
- Or text your zip code to (520) 200-2223
- Not sure what to write, download a sample letter.
- View Karin Kent’s latest personal letter here: https://parentsformoore.org/2017/03/23/laundry-list/
- Attend the monthly County Commissioners’ regular meeting and speak during the public portion. TELL them why school funding matters. Please arrive early to sign up to speak prior to the meeting. Residents allotted 3 minutes, 6 minutes if next speaker cedes their time.
- April 4th at 5:25 pm – County Commissioner regular meeting; public speaking at beginning; Old Courthouse Carthage
- April 18th at 5:25 pm -**MCS will present their budget request to at the County Commissioners regular meeting. Public speaking at beginning; Old Courthouse Carthage
- Click here for a list of all upcoming County Commissioner meetings.
- Spread the word! Please tell your neighbors and friends who don’t have children in our school system why this is important. They may not be aware of what has already been cut, especially since their children may have graduated before 2008. Good schools impact everyone’s property values! Good schools keep businesses coming to Moore County!
- Sign the Pass HB13 Petition ! There is power in numbers.
- Follow Parents for Moore – News on Facebook. We track the current education policies at the national, state, and local levels that impact Moore County Schools.