Lincoln County Schools Superintendent Lory Morrow is proposing a $2.7 million increase in spending in her proposed budget for the 2019-20 school year.
The biggest chunk of that increase – nearly $1.2 – would fund 20 new teacher positions in response to growth and staffing needs related to Title II, the federal program that emphasizes services for low-income students and those with disabilities.
“Our first goal is to have adequate staffing for top quality instruction,” Morrow told members of the Board of Education’s Budget and Finance Committee Jan. 8. “We want to make sure we have the right people in front of our children and working in our organization no matter what their role is.”
Morrow said increases in mandated spending – including state-required pay increases – add another $1 million in new spending.
Morrow also cited safety as a priority for the next school year. She said the proposed addition of one social worker and two guidance counselors is aimed at keeping students safe.
“We’re doing some interesting work now as we’re looking at preparing for interventions to try to head off some of these potential issues or remediation needs,” Morrow said. “We’re working through the multitiered system of support process, and we need to continue to develop our teachers and staff in those intervention processes.”
Nearly $322,000 in new spending would go to school safety.
Another $200,000 would be aimed at professional development, including collaborating with UNC-Charlotte.
“We’ve had some good responses on our leadership training that we’re doing with our administrators,” Morrow said. “We also want to look into a potential partnership with UNCC to help fill (exceptional children) vacancies. We also have to continue specialized training for our technology and maintenance folks as things are changing as they are keeping up with current trends.”
The board will review the budget with Morrow and other staff members before presenting it at a joint meeting with the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners.