MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - The Montgomery County Board of Education has approved Superintendent Dr. Ann Roy Moore’s reduction in force plan.
The plan includes cutting 140 teacher positions and other staff positions by next school year. MPS will factor in retirement and not replacing teachers who leave, so it’s unclear at this time the exact number of teacher positions that will be lost.
“Is it a shift or we giving a shaft?” remarked MCBOE member Lesa Keith.
According to Moore, this will save MPS $12.7 million.
“But I have never seen a more unfair plan than this,” said board member Mary Briers.
“They’ve been very thoughtful in how to do this,” said board member member Clare Weil.
Last month WSFA 12 News spoke with MPS Chief Financial Officer Arthur Watts about the hard decisions that would have to be made by the school system in the coming months.
MPS will also do the following to save additional costs:
- Reduce the number of central office facilities by three (Bellinger Hill, Fairwest and Professional Service Center).
- Reduce the contract length of MPACT teachers from 12 months to 10 months
- Reduce utility costs by operating on a four-day work week during the summer months
- Continue to reduce costs by consolidating under-utilized schools withing the next 2-3 years
- Reduce the number of unfunded transportation routes
- Review contracted services to avoid duplication and address the needs of the district
In the end the recommendation by the superintendent regarding cuts was approved in a 4-3 vote.
“It’s one of the hardest days we will ever face, but we have to live within in our means,” said Weil.
The reason behind these proposed cuts include the $10 million deficit forecasted for the upcoming school year, decreased student enrollment and a shortage in revenue coming in.
“We’re trying to get in line with what the state gives us cause we know we will get that funding for them for teachers,” said Moore.
“We have to deal with it from that perspective," said Moore. "That’s one of the reasons we are under intervention because of our finances.”
Many Board members hoping this is a wake up call to citizens that there is a shortage of revenues in local funding with just 10 mills coming in.
“We get an increase in millage, we get an increase in teachers, and we get a quality education for our children,” said Weil.
Members of the Montgomery City Council weighed in on the cuts after Tuesday night’s city council meeting: