Read the superintendent’s full budget proposal at the bottom of this article.
A new Wake County Schools budget draft calls for the elimination of about 220 non-teaching jobs and two new schools in Raleigh.
Wake County Schools Superintendent Anthony Tata’s proposal for the 2011-12 school year cuts 46 jobs from Central Services and one clerical position from each of the district’s 163 schools. Other job cuts would result from the number of contract months allotted for assistant principals.
Two new schools, Walnut Creek Elementary in Southeast Raleigh and Wake NC State University STEM Early College, will open next school year to help accommodate more than 3,300 students entering the system.
Walnut Creek Elementary has already drawn criticism for its projected 80-percent low-income and more than 50-percent low-performing student population. Wake NCSU STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Early College will be established on or near the NC State campus with 50 students in the first year.
The $1.5 billion budget proposal also maintains student-teacher ratios at current levels and decreases this ratio in fourth- and fifth-grade classrooms from 28 to 27.
Although the proposal does not provide a pay raise to teachers, it does allot a one-time $500 bonus to all full-time teachers. Part-time teachers would receive a prorated amount.
Under the proposal, the district would “stabilize” under-enrolled schools and those that have lost a large number of students. These schools would receive money to pay for three to six teachers in excess of those normally allowed. All small elementary schools would feature programs in art, music and physical education, and all middle schools would have foreign language classes.
Barwell Road, Brentwood and Wilburn elementary schools in Raleigh and Creech Road Elementary School in Garner will receive assistance from federal Race to the Top funds through the new Renaissance program.
The school board will review the superintendent’s budget proposal and hold a public hearing before making any changes and voting to send it to the Wake County Board of Commissioners by May 15.