Governor Perdue’s FY 2010-2011 budget calls for a 4.3 percent reduction in state appropriations for K-12 public education. Once $55 million in federal “Education Stabilization Funds” used to replace state funding is factored in, however, that actual proposed reduction to the existing spending plan comes to 3.5 percent – or roughly $260 million.
Still, at 3.5 percent, public education receives the largest budgetary reduction in Perdue’s recommendations.
The proposed budget calls for over $314 million in program cuts, the elimination of 36 positions and additional funds to expand a number of programs.
Major expansions and reductions include:
- Student Diagnostics for Grades K-3 and G5: $39 million. Additional monies for hand-held diagnostic devices for K-3 and grade 5 teachers for “real time” updates to student achievement feedback. ($17.7 million of these funds would be a recurring expense for annual software license fees)
- North Carolina Virtual Public School: $10.9 million. Covers an expected 25 percent expansion in enrollment in this on-line learning program.
- Teacher Compensation: Perdue proposes a one-time 0.5 percent bonus to all state employees to make up for the unpaid furlough salary reduction imposed last year. This “payback” bonus would total $62.5 million
- Would also provide an average step increases of 1.8 percent to teachers and instructional support personnel and 1.6 percent for administrators
- Retirement Fund: Allocate an additional $20 million for the Teachers and State Employees’ Retirement System
- Dropout Prevention: $1.5 million expansion in dropout prevention grants
- Local Education Agency (LEA) Management Flexibility: $135 million. Reduces state aid to LEAs. Gives LEAs flexibility to manage personnel cuts through attrition. LEAs are required to keep K-3 teacher and staff requirements unchanged. This reduction would be in addition to the $225 million flexibility reduction LEAs faced last year
- Career and Technical Education (CTE): $55 million. CTE reduction offset dollar-for-dollar by monies from Federal Education Stabilization Fund
- Average Annual Teacher Salary: $45 million. Dollar amount represents savings from adjustment to reflect unreplenished teacher turnover
- Department of Public Instruction: $2.8 million. Eliminates 26 positions in DPI’s Department of Information Technology
- More at Four: $3.2 million. Reflects 4 percent reduction to overall budget
- LEA Central Office: $5.4 million. Represents 5 percent reduction in allotment for LEA central office administration
- Assistant Principals: $8.9 million. Reflects savings from increase in the ratio for hiring assistant principals from 1/800 students to 1/863 students
- Instructional Support Personnel: $7.1 million. Reduces Instructional Support Personnel allotment by 2 percent