Albemarle County Public Schools superintendent Matt Haas presented the School Board with a $194.3 million budget request Thursday. The plan represents a 4 percent increase from the current school year.
With revenues projected to grow by only 3.7 percent, to $193.7 million, the school system is predicting a deficit of $642,975.
The requested budget would give teachers and classified staff a 2.3 percent raise.
Haas’ request, titled “Albemarle Rising,” includes $2.6 million for 20 new proposals, including:
$645,550 to move bus drivers to a higher pay grade. Both Albemarle and Charlottesville have struggled to fill driver vacancies this year.
$470,000 for staffing, transportation and technology to expand Albemarle Tech, the county’s first specialized center for high school students. Albemarle Tech currently serves 21 students, and the division wants 60 to 80 students to enroll next year.
$150,000 to reinstate the Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps (NJROTC)/National Defense Cadet Corps (NDCC) program at Monticello High School. The proposal sets a goal of enrolling 30 students in the spring of 2020.
$135,347 for additional equity education specialists to administer professional development in culturally responsive teaching.
$108,184 for a proposal that would require teachers who retire early to substitute teach 20 times a year in order to receive health insurance through the county’s Voluntary Early Retirement Incentive Program.
$105,401 to introduce a “talent development model” for the division’s gifted education program. A program manager would help schools create a more diverse “talent pool” for gifted services that reflects the demographics of the general population.
$76,812 to expand the Short Term Education Program (STEP) to Walton Middle School and Monticello High School. The program has helped to decrease the disproportionate suspension of minority students at Burley and Jouett middle schools.
$74,083 for a new School Safety Coordinator position.
$61,059: Estimated reduction in revenues from lowering tuition for employees’ out-of-district children to $1,000. Employees living outside of the county currently pay as much as $5,500 for their child to attend Albemarle’s schools.
$5,000 for the “First School Pilot Program,” an initiative that would provide transportation to allow kindergartners in urban ring elementary schools to remain at their first school if their family moves to another school zone within the urban ring.
The School Board is scheduled to hold its next budget work session Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.