More students will equal more teachers in next year’s county school budget.
“We’ve had some class sizes that have gotten larger over the last few years,” Hall County Superintendent Will Schofield said. “We just finished personnel meetings last week, and I’m estimating we’ll have 15-20 additional classroom teachers in our schools in the district next year.”
Schofield said 12-15 new teachers would definitely be hired, and he said he plans to include room in the budget for up to 25 positions, so there will be some leeway at the beginning of next school year to hire more if necessary.
“That’s giving us the money set aside so when classes are larger at different schools that first week of school, we can add,” he said. “That’s big. The last three years we’ve had no unassigned positions in the budget.”
The school district has slowly grown in enrollment, adding more than 600 new seats in the system this year from the previous fiscal year for a total of 27,345 students.
The new additions will cost between $1.5 million and $2 million in salaries and benefits, Schofield said. “This will be the first significant add since the meltdown in 2008,” he said.
As for where the new teachers will go, they’re needed all over the district.
“Everything from a kindergarten position, all the way up to a high school science position and everything in between,” he said.
“It’s at different schools, different pockets in different places.”
School board members have already approved a full school year for the 2014-15 year, coming to 180 days of student instruction, and a full 190-day contract for teachers.
“This being a year that we can get boys and girls back in school 180 days and more teachers in classrooms, that’s a good year,” Schofield said.