County school board holds budget hearing

The DeKalb County School Board last week held its first budget hearing of the 2021-22 fiscal year.

Chief School Financial Officer Anthony Cooper led the first of two public budget hearings during Thursday’s work session.

“This time of year, we are still a work in progress,” he said. “The budget is due in Montgomery by September 15th.”

Cooper walked through various financing aspects of the preliminary budget, focusing on the State Foundation Program, which makes up roughly 50% of the overall budget allocating money to schools based on the number of students in the district.

“State revenue usually makes up about 67% of the overall budget and the foundation program is the biggest state program within the state, so it’s about 50%,” he said.

Cooper said the program is the main source of funding for school teachers, administrators and classroom support supplies, among other things.

With the central financial source for a school system coming from numbers based on the Average Daily Membership (ADM), or enrollment of the first 20 days after Labor Day, Cooper said DeKalb County lost roughly 375 students.

“When you lose that many students, your finances are going down within the State Foundation Program,” he said.

However, before the COVID-19 pandemic, he said the demographic numbers stayed normal. With that being said, legislators created a set of funds referred to as the Teacher Stabilization Fund. Those funds are said to keep an estimated 1,000 teachers in Alabama from losing their jobs due to a heavy loss of student enrollment since the pandemic.

“What they are saying is, we are going back to the year before COVID-19 and whatever your enrollment and figures were, we are going to give you money to compensate for that loss for one year,” said Cooper.

He said DeKalb County took a big hit with the loss of 21.8 teachers, but due to the Teacher Stabilization Fund, they were able to keep those employees.

As they wait for federal money to be allocated, which arrives later than the state, Cooper said he should have the final numbers and allocations by the second budget hearing.

DeKalb County Superintendent Wayne Lyles said Rep. Nathaniel Ledbetter recently said the budget projections were “looking really good this year.”

The board also:

• approved the school’s financial statements/general fund bank reconciliation and local school fund balance, bill and accounts

• approved the following bids: CNP supplemental Grocery Bid from Osborn Brothers, Petroleum Products from Cedar Bluff Oil Co. and Copy Paper bid from Strickland Paper.

• approved the On the Job Injury of Shelia Frix - teacher - Collinsville High School - 0 days and Jo Poole - secretary - DeKalb County Technology Center - 8 days.

• approved the following retirements and resignations: Ginger Hobbs - science and mathematics teacher - Geraldine High School - retirement - 8/1/21, Hugh Taylor - science teacher - Crossville Middle School - retirement - 11/1/21, Dana Kittle - bus driver - Crossville Elementary School - retirement - 9/1/21, Tabatha Greenwood Hilyer - elementary teacher - Henagar Jr. High School - resignation - 8/27/21, Becky Nelson - CNP worker - Crossville Elementary School - resignation - 8/16/21, Nicole Jensen - social sciences teacher - Crossville High School - resignation - 8/31/21, Heath Vincent - social science teacher and head football coaching duties - Valley Head High School - resignation - 8/6/21 and Alex Carpenter - 9-month/4-hour assistant custodian - Valley Head High School - resignation - 8/4/21

• approved the leave of absence of Misty Beason - elementary teacher - Crossville Elementary School - 8/23/21-9/24/21, Jackie Davis - CNP worker - Plainview High School - 8/2/21-9/30/21, William Chandler - science teacher - Crossville High School - 8/2/21-8/18/21, Rebecca Jane McClendon - bus driver - Geraldine High School - 8/18/21-1/18/22, Traci Treadaway - elementary teacher - Geraldine High School - 8/2/21-10/31/21 (extended from 9/30/21), Willard Carter Jr. - bus driver - Collinsville High School - 8/2/21-11/19/21, Brooke Cowart - CNP worker - Crossville Middle School - 8/221-8/27/21, Miranda Edwards - elementary teacher - Collinsville High School - 8/23/21-5/27/22 and Lona Kilgo - bus aide - Fyffe Special Services Center - 9/1/21-10/15/21

• approved the transfer of Tim McCollum - assistant principal to probationary principal at Fyffe High School (2021-235) (two-year contract 9/1/21 - 8/31/24), Dr. Anna Hariston - instructional supervisor (special education) to instructional supervisor (federal programs) - Central Office (2021-251), Ami Black - intervention teacher to EL teacher at Geraldine High School (2021-269), Ryan Johnson - assistant custodian to elementary teacher at Crossville Elementary School (2021-270), LaRue Lankford - P.E. aide to assistant secretary at Plainview High School (2021-272) and Lisa Garmany - 4-hour assistant custodian to 9-month/7-hour assistant custodian at Plainview High School (2021-273)

• approved the certified placement (All placements are made pending a background review meeting suitability criteria and negative, pre-employment drug screen and appropriate certification): Kristin Williams - 1⁄2 assistant principal / 1⁄2 teacher (9.5 month) - Crossville Middle School (2021-257), Avery Gipson - elementary teacher - Henagar Jr. High School (2021-263) (Effective 8/4/21), Greg Carreker - Secondary social sciences teacher - Valley Head High School (2021-267) (effective 8/17/21), Jennifer Mashburn - intervention teacher - Geraldine High School (2021-275), April Parnell - English language arts teacher (leave from 8/10/21-10/1/21) - Sylvania High School (2021-277) and Jermey Tuttle - secondary social sciences teacher - Crossville High School (2021-279)

• approved the support placement of Margaret Brown - receptionist - Central Office (2021-231), Andrea West - middle school secretary - Crossville Middle School (2021-255), Tabitha Shay Mitchell - itinerant assistant custodian (9-month/7-hour) - 1⁄2 Crossville High School / 1⁄2 Crossville Elementary School (2021-256), Monica Anderson - CNP worker - Collinsville High School (2021-259), Natasha Fisher - 9-month/4-hour assistant custodian - Fyffe Special Services Center /DeKalb Youth Services Center (2021-264) (effective 8/23/21), Brandy Baker - CNP worker - Crossville Elementary School (2021-268), Sarah Potter - CNP worker - Crossville Elementary School (2021-268), Noie Yancey - bus driver - Crossville Elementary School (2021-271), Casi Thompson - itinerant school nurse - Geraldine High School (2021-274) (effective 8/17/21), Mark Brown - 9-month/4-hour assistant custodian - Valley Head High School (2021-276) (effective 8/23/21), Sadie Durham - itinerant special education paraprofessional - Plainview High School (2021-278) and Tanya Chesser - 9-month/7-hour assistant custodian - Crossville Elementary School (2021-280)

• approved the following contracts: Luette Benefield - Collinsville Band Director - AAEI Grant, Crossville Elementary After School Program - Daniel Bryant - after school teacher - 21st Century - Jultydi Franco Ramos - After School Student Aide - 21st Century - Alexandria Spurgin - after school teacher - 21st Century, Anna Naylor - Art Instruction - CES Title I, Custodial Support - ESSER I - David Bowen - Collinsville High School - Teresa Bowen - Collinsville High School - Rita Bryant - Crossville Elementary School - Robert Bryant - Crossville Elementary - April Hill - Fyffe High School - Charles Hunt - Crossville Middle School - Dianna King - Sylvania High School - Eddie King - Sylvania High School - Wendy Olchawa - Geraldine High School - Lorilyn Owen - Collinsville High School - Erin Pruett - Ider High School - Mark Quarles - Crossville High School - Josh Strange - Geraldine High School - Michael Troxtel - Ider High School, Paul Tallent - Band Camp Instructor - Collinsville High School - ESSER 1, Ann Brownfield - intervention - Collinsville High School - GEER, Kimberly Ford - in-school literacy tutor - Collinsville High School - GEER, Angie Broyles - speech language therapy - IDEA B, Holly Farmer - homebound - IDEA B, Kim Keena - homebound - IDEA B, Theia Taylor - speech language therapy - IDEA B, Karen Holcomb - summer bus driver, TEAMS Science - Patrick Blevins - Crossville Middle School - preliminary - Patricia Martin - Sylvania High School - preliminary - Tobey Williamson - Crossville High School - preliminary, TEAMS Math - Peyton Knop - Crossville High School - preliminary

• approved the following volunteer coaches: Collinsville High School - Jeff Chandler - baseball, James Coker - softball, Teddy Helms - football & baseball, Mike McElrath - football, Bear Jones - basketball, David Hernandez - soccer, Chad Wills - softball, Kelvin Stewart - baseball, Nathan Coker - Football, Crossville High School - Joshua Causey - football & baseball - Gary Heflin - football & baseball, Fyffe High School - Erik Magnusson - cross country, Dallas Burt - softball, Tommy Mayes - girls basketball, Logan McKenzie - baseball, Brant Rowell - baseball, Tyler Wilks - golf, Ricky Bryant - boys basketball, Kenya Garmon - cheer, Summer Guin - softball, Henagar Jr. High School - Joseph Goza - basketball, Ider High School - Cole Wooten - boys basketball, Shawn Traylor - softball, Austin Brown - Basketball, Elizabeth Williamson - Volleyball, Jay Massey - Football, Plainview High School - Blake Holloway - Football, Jason Traylor - Softball, Monty Price - Softball, Jason Keef - Cheer, John Prose - Football, Phillip Jackson - Football, Josh York - Football, Jason Brown - Football, Eli White - Football, Kennedi Traylor - Softball, John Willoughby - Basketball, Sylvania High School - Labron Hill - Golf, Valley Head High School - Jacob Bain - Football, Joshua Smith - Football, Anthony Brown - Cross Country, Rayford Bethune - Football, John Kirby - Football and Craig Hulgan - Football

• approved the following superintendent’s recommendations, comments and reports:

- permission to place personnel pending board approval.

- 2021-2022 Federal Programs Advisory Committee

- Energy Services Contract Amendment 3B

- Job descriptions of facilities improvement manager, summer program teacher, intervention teacher and tutor.

- DeKalb County Schools fleet renewal

- recognized the DeKalb County Technical Center for their recent achievement and recognition by Governor Kay Ivey for Worked-Based Learning Regional Best Practice Region 1.

- amended the school calendar, announcing Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021 as a virtual learning day.

The next meeting is scheduled for Sept. 9, 2021 with a budget hearing at 4:00 p.m., work session at 4:30 and regular meeting at 5 p.m. in the meeting room of the Facilities Building.

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