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Friday, June 18, 2010

When A News Story Isn't Complete

A local TV station recently ran a piece on the Rock Hill Schools Budget discussions. Of course, we don't know everything that Craig Craze (York Prep Charter) or Bob Norwood (Rock Hill Schools Chair) said, but the edited version implied there was controversy between the two groups. Craze is saying the school district blames York Prep for all their financial woes and goes on to say the district will be better off financially when students leave to go to York Prep.

First, let me state, I have heard no one blame the current financial situation on York Prep!

Second, there is some truth to Craze's comment about more local tax dollars left per student when students leave. However, the problem is in budgeting/planning. York Prep has so far refused to give the Rock Hill Schools the number of District 3 students who will be attending. Because of this, the district must budget and plan for the number of students who were enrolled last year. This means the district must have teachers on staff available at the start of the year. If the students don't show up, the state money doesn't come in, and there is not enough money to pay for the teacher salaries. The district would then have  a reduction in force - which is not fair to the teachers who have been hired - or to take money from the reserve fund - which weakens the district financial position. A little communication from York Prep would prevent this from happening.

Additionally, there needs to be some discussion on what happens when/if students want to move between schools during the year. Since York Prep says they will be maxed out - what we are talking about - would we allow students to come back to our schools - because we wouldn't have the teaching staff to handle them - causing class size to increase or at least disrupt the already established classes.

I believe thse are mostly start-up issues and over time will not have an impact - but it would be nice to share a little information.

Rock Hill Schools on Channel 3 from Jim Vining on Vimeo.

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