Just Say NO to Waivers

Say No To Waivers“Classrooms First for Georgia” – Requires, at a minimum, 65% of a system’s total operating funds to be spent in the classroom.  The statute was enacted in FY2008 and DeKalb Schools has never been in compliance.
On Monday the board will vote to waive the 65% rule for FY2014.
School districts are considered compliant if they increase their direct classroom expenditures as a percent of total operating expenditures by two or more percentage points over the previous fiscal year.

Expenditures FY2013 FY2014 Budgeted
Classroom $ 519,389,964 $ 549,876,910 $ 598,678,971
Operating $ 843,716,713 $ 893,149,340 $ 959,363,447
Classroom % 61.56 % 61.57 % 62.40 %

Fiscal Year 2014
The FY14 operating expenditures increased by $50 million from the previous year.  Unfortunately they spent the exact same percent on classroom expenditures.
Fiscal Year 2015 – Budgeted
FY15 will see an estimated increase of $66 million in operating expenditures and should move classroom instruction to 62.40%.
Fiscal Year 2016
The budgeting season is approaching us.  We can’t do anything about FY14 or FY15.  Moving forward, shouldn’t the school board’s top budget priority be to construct a budget with at least 65% of the operating expenditures going into the classroom for FY16?  As Nancy Jester use to say, “More classroom, less bureaucracy.”
#JustSayNoToWaivers   #MoreClassroomLessBureaucracy

4 responses to “Just Say NO to Waivers

  1. Sylvia Richardson

    Does the school system have an internal auditor? If so, to whom do they report?
    I’m a retiree from Gwinnett County Public Scools where our auditors kept the central office, where I worked, cognizant of everything we spent. That’s one of the reasons GCPS is so strong. Dr. Alton Crews always stressed to us that we were not an adult employment agency. We were there to support the local schools.

  2. “Moving forward, shouldn’t the school board’s top budget priority be to construct a budget with at least 65% of the operating expenditures going into the classroom for FY16?”
    Yes, it should.
    Thank you for pointing this out.
    Please share this post with the rest of the BOE and politely ask them to make a pledge to not vote for a budget that doesn’t comply with Title 50.

  3. DeKalb Schools does not have an auditor.

  4. Stan you are right , but you will probably be the only no vote. The BOE continues to build the central office and do exactly what Mr. Thurmond wants. The way it is working now we do not need a BOE because we have a dictator to make decisions. On top of that SACS won’t even let you ask questions about issues unless cleared by the super. in advance. That is the only way you can restore full accreditation. This is a joke right?