"The Worst I've Ever Seen"
Tuesday, 25 May 2010

May 25--  "It's the worst I've seen it in the 37 years I've been in education.  I've been superintendent now going on 17 years and I've never seen it this bad," says Toombs County School Superintendent Dr. Kendall Brantley about the impact the current economy is having on school funding.

"We look like we're going to be about $900,000 less than we were last year," Dr. Brantley reports about funds he expects the system to receive from the state of Georgia for fiscal year 2011.

One of the money-saving steps the Toombs County school system is taking is a shorter school year for students, but each school day will be longer.  The 160-day schedule will start the day after Labor Day to save on operating costs.  "We tried to cut out the amount of electricity we had to pay for during the hottest month of the year and the amount we had to pay for maintenance and operations in general.  We feel we will save about $125,000 to $130,000 by doing that," Dr. Brantley says.

Dr. Brantley says Toombs County is not projecting any furlough days next school term for its employees unless the state cuts funds even more.  If that happens, "If we have to take a furlough day, all we're going to do is knock 45 minutes off each day that the day has been extended and we're going to say that eight 45-minute periods is equal to one furlough day," he reports.

Dr. Brantley says money has been saved by not replacing employees who have retired including the principal at Toombs County High School.  Instead, he will will two hats next year as both school superintendent and high school principal.

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