The total budget for the school system is $36,518,976, a decrease of $902,130. The budget does not include grants that the school may receive in the coming year.
The bonuses would be paid through funds in the general fund from Educational Jobs Program Funds last year. Director of schools Dr. Rick Denning recommended the board give all certified staff a one-time bonus of $1,425, and $1,348 for all support staff.
Changes to the budget for 2011-12 include a definite 1 percent increase for teachers. Denning said this is the first raise in salary for teachers in two years for the school system.
The 1 percent increase will be made possible through Basic Education Program growth funds from the state and county tax income.
Denning said the board will be requesting the city provide funding to increase the raise from 1 to 3 percent.
The board also hopes to switch compensation for the maintenance department to a three-level pay scale determined by skill set. Funding for this change, which would require an additional $109,649 per year, is not in the budget without additional funding from the city of Cleveland or the state to increase salaries.
“It’s the best maintenance department I have ever worked with,” Denning said, commenting the department deserved more money.
Board members also expressed concern about the staff leaving for other opportunities if they were not given a raise.
These funds will be requested by the school board when it presents its budget to the City Council on Monday.
The board also approved an amendment to the 2010-11 budget to include an increase in funds from accepting the Safe Schools grant, BEP growth funds, Small Learning Communities grant, High Schools That Work grant, Energy Efficient Schools, a TREK grant and additional funding for the pre-K program. The amendment also included funding from ConnecTN and E-rate. The amendment added almost $2 million to the 2010-11 general fund budget. Some of these grants are reoccurring, but have not been included in the 2011-12 general fund budget because the amounts are not definite, according to Brenda Carson, business manager for Cleveland City Schools.
Cleveland schools receive funding from a variety of sources including the state of Tennessee, Bradley County, the city of Cleveland, and to a lesser degree the federal government and revenue from fees, interest, etc. A copy of the general fund budget will be available on the Cleveland City Schools website.
n The Cleveland BOE will have another called meeting at 4:30 p.m. on Monday to discuss the contract for the next director of schools.
On Tuesday, some members of the school board visited the Kingsport and Bristol, Va., communities to talk with people about candidates of focus Dr. Damon Cathey and Martin Ringstaff, respectively.