Members of the Clinton City Schools Board of Education signed off on the system’s request for additional per pupil funding from the county, during a meeting held last week.
CCS superintendent Dr. Stuart Blount presented a letter, addressed to Ed Causey, county manager, to board members at the March 3 meeting. In the letter, Blount requested the per pupil allocation increase from $930 to $1,050.
“This increase would provide an additional $369,600 for our district,” Blount stated in the letter. “We anticipate our fund balance appropriation to be limited to $500,000 for 2016-2017.”
During a work session meeting held with the county manager and county commissioners last month, Blount presented the requested increase.
The local funding amount approved by the Sampson Board of Commissioners has increased from $830 per student in 2011-12 to $930 per student in 2015-16. The state average for 2014-15 was $1,630 per student.
“Our requested increase would move the Sampson County per student funding closer to the state-wide average,” Blount added. “In addition, we have taken a strategic approach to managing our funding resources over the past three or four years. This approach has allowed us to truly align both instructional and operational practices. We are now at the point where additional cuts to funding would most likely result in the reduction of employees.”
According to Blount’s letter, it has been difficult for CCS to plan for the coming fiscal year because the system has not received any guidance and/or planning allotments from the state. The lack of knowledge in state funding, Blount said, the system can not begin planning or identifying the potential impact the state budget will have on the school’s budget.
CCS, Blount shared with county commissioners, is going to continue focusing on attracting and retaining highly qualified teachers, alignment of instructional and operational practices, and maintaining adequate facilities during the 2016-2017 school year.
“While there is great uncertainty in state and federal funding levels, we are striving to maintain adequate staffing levels to provide quality educational opportunities,” Blount wrote in his letter. “To do this we will focus on recruiting and retaining instructional staff, school level support, professional development, instructional and digital learning resources, and district level support.”
Reach Kristy D. Carter at 910-592-8137, ext. 2588. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd. Like us on Facebook.