School funds shortage fix a simple one
December 09, 2013 08:07 PM | 1736 views | 4 4 comments | 35 35 recommendations | email to a friend | print
DEAR EDITOR:

The solution is rather simple. “Of the 13,526 people employed by the school district, 5,538 are classroom teachers.”

It’s elementary arithmetic that there are 7,988 employees who are not classroom teachers. So, for every seven teachers there are 10 other employees.

The core mission of the CCSD should be educating students, and teachers are the front line of this activity. Every single employee’s daily work must be confronted with the question of whether or not their effort is educating a student. If not, that activity should be evaluated as to whether or not it serves the core mission.

The CCSD should do its homework and cut some overhead before asking Gov. Deal to give it more of our money.

Jim Mallard

Marietta

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@ Jim Mallard
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December 10, 2013
First order of business - don't believe everything you read on these pages.

Secondly, AmericanMale nailed it. Had you, Mr. Mallard, done your homework you could have saved yourself some writing time or at least add some constructive commentary.

On the constructive side;

Is there anyone in this county that feels we have the right number of teachers today?

Does anyone feel classroom sizes are too small? If not, do something about it.

Is everyone satisfied with 175 school days as the new norm, rather than 180 school days? If not, do something about it.

If you think the school district can cut its way to get the following, let's hear your suggestions.

We hear it costs roughly;

* $3.0 million per furlough day @ 5 days that's $15.0 million.

* $1.0 million for 5 days of transportation

And here's the kicker -

* Replace at least 1,400 teachers the district has lost since 2008 or 2009 at an average cost of $75,000 per teacher (i.e. salaries, taxes, benefits, teacher retirement contribution) at a cost of $105 million

So far, that's $121 million. Mr. Mallard - what are your SPECIFIC suggestions to cut $121 million from the current school district expenses?

By the way, teacher's haven't had a raise in years and they, like the rest of us, are facing greater expense for their health care.
AmericanMale
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December 10, 2013
Mr. Mallard, your prescribed "simple fix" is based on an errant premise. With my apologies to the late Paul Harvey, here's the rrrrrest of the story:

5,538 Classroom Teachers

1,452 Special Education Teachers

263 School Counselors

35 School Social Workers

49 School Psychologists

127 Media Specialists

1,307 Paraprofessionals

That's about 9,000 people in classrooms, helping our children learn. The rest are school nurses, bus drivers and other transportation support needed, maintenance workers who keep the HVAC, plumbing, and electricity working, cafeteria and food service workers, safety officers and other support staff such as custodians, bookkeepers, etc.

Even IF every one of those non-classroom teacher positions were eliminated, that wouldn't cover even one-fifth of the budget shortfall!! And then, who would pay those bills? Who would clean the bathrooms? Who would answer the phones? Who would fix things? When tackling the education of 108,000 students, a support structure is crucial in keeping the teachers doing what they do best: teaching!

CCSB should ask the Cobb delegation to make the senior exemption correspond to the Social Security retirement age. That way, it kicks in when seniors' income is at a fixed level. I expect that would bring in nearly $30 million. The state should reduce or eliminate so-called "austerity cuts" to fund other government programs. The state also should include exemptions when calculating how much districts get back. If they did, I imagine that would go a long way toward eliminating the rest of the shortfall. If Cobb citizens' education taxes actually came back to our school district, I expect we'd be just fine.

A great video that explains the budget process is on the CCSD web site at http://www.cobbk12.org/budget/ It also allows comments and suggestions to be posted (though I don't see any on it right now).
Guido Sarducci
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December 11, 2013
With all your "expecting" it appears that you are as clueless as the letter writer.

Get off the tired horse about the senior exemption.

That is a hot button issue that nobody wants to touch. You are advocating putting a tax burden on the very people whose taxes built the schools, the streets, roads and bridges that we have.
AmericanMale
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December 18, 2013
@Guido,

Not going to relent... There SHOULD be a senior exemption, but Cobb's is excessive!

Why don't you spend your energies offering solutions instead of thinking of old SNL skits and ways to insult people.

Giddyup!
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