School board to get another look at $414.2 million budget

January 19, 1994|By Carol L. Bowers | Carol L. Bowers,Staff Writer

County school board members get another chance tonight to review the school system's proposed $414.2 million budget.

The spending plan, reviewed last Wednesday at a budget work session, is to be formally presented to the school board tonight by acting superintendent Carol S. Parham. The school board meeting, at the school system's headquarters on Riva Road in Annapolis, is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.

Dr. Parham's proposed budget marks an increase of $30.8 million, or 8 percent, over the current year's $383.5 million allocation.

Most of the proposed increase would cover pay raises negotiated last fall for employees: a 2 percent raise this month and a 4 percent raise in July, when the budget would take effect.

Comments from the public are scheduled to be heard during two meetings next month: Feb. 2 at school system headquarters and Feb. 9 at Glen Burnie High School. Both meetings are scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m.

Among other items on the school board agenda is a presentation from members of the teachers union addressing the concerns of elementary school teachers

"A year ago, members of the union came to me and said they wanted to do a study on elementary school teachers concerns," said Thomas J. Paolino, president of the Teachers Association of Anne Arundel County. "There's an attitudinal thing -- elementary teachers are treated differently, but planning time is the biggest issue."

Mr. Paolino said a 15-member TAAAC committee found that middle and high school teachers are given one period a day to use for creating lesson plans, grading papers and related work. "But in elementary school, at least two or three days a week, the teachers have no break other than lunch," he said.

He also noted that in November, elementary school teachers spent two days having conferences with parents, while high school teachers had one "in-service" day -- used for professional education -- and one work day, which teachers could use for planning and getting caught up. In January, high school teachers received two work days to do grades at the end of the semester, while elementary teachers had one day of "in-service" and one workday, he said.

"We want to do this presentation so the board is aware of the problems," Mr. Paolino said. "We're trying to find a way to increase planning time for elementary teachers."

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