May 16, 2013

Whitfield schools leave some jobs vacant

From Staff Reports

— Whitfield County Board of Education members hired most of next year’s teachers during a called meeting on Monday, but there are a few vacant spots they don’t plan to fill.

The board approved 982 teacher contracts, but cut 10 teaching positions, a counseling job, one in-school suspension job and a clerk position.

School system spokesman Eric Beavers said the cuts were made after employees retired from the jobs and officials decided not to fill them for budget reasons.

The first of several budget hearings is set for Monday, June 3, at 6:30 p.m. at the school system’s central office at 1306 S. Thornton Ave. Board members haven’t said whether they plan to raise taxes.

The budget for the current fiscal year, which ends June 30, is approximately $94 million. Officials have said they may get as much as $6 million more to spend as state officials work to restore funding schools have lost over the years.

Dalton Board of Education members on Monday approved a tentative general fund budget of $59.66 million in revenues and $64.34 million in expenditures. They’re expected to finalize the budget at their Monday, June 10, meeting. Officials there aren’t planning for a tax rate increase, but they are expecting to hire more teachers.

Dalton school system spokeswoman Pat Holloway said officials project about 29 new positions, mostly because enrollment is expected to rise by about 2.5 percent to 7,700 students.