Growth Drives Superintendent's Plan for Student Success
March 6, 2007 – In the Plan for Student Success presented to the Board of Education at its meeting this afternoon,
Superintendent Del Burns said the school system is seeking to meet the impact of dramatic student enrollment growth and state-mandated
Dr. Burns said the funding of new initiatives were limited recognizing 1) the significant investment Wake County citizens
made by approving the November 2006 bond referendum for school construction and 2) any recommendations for change in academic
programs will follow completion of the recently approved independent curriculum management audit.
“My vision is that working as a community of educators with the support of the broader community, we will
ensure that every child educated in our school system graduates on time, prepared for the future,” said Burns. “It
is our duty to aspire to high expectations and standards.”
Planning for growth
Dr. Burns said the school system is seeking to keep pace with thousands of new
students entering the schools. Enrollment grew by 7,500 for 2006-07 and is projected to increase by more than 8,000 for 2007-08.
The largest increase in funding is in response to growth. The plan includes $16.5 million to open seven new schools and
meet the needs of an additional 8,000 students. The new schools opening for 2007-08 include East Garner Elementary, North
Forest Pines Elementary, Sanford Creek Elementary, East Cary Middle, Wendell Middle, East Wake School of Engineering Systems
and East Wake School of Arts, Education and Global Studies.
Legislative changes for salary increases and employer's matching benefit changes require the school district to spend
an additional $9.6 million.
The plan includes $4.6 million in savings, removing one-time costs from the previous year and budget reductions.
The school system receives 61 percent of its funding from the state, 33 percent from local government and six percent
from the federal government. The county appropriation that provides most of the local funding totals $305.3 million. That
includes the school system request for an increase in the county appropriation of $29.4 million.
3-year plan based on strategic directives
The Plan for Student Success describes a three-year budget
plan. It provides an in-depth and detailed business description of financial needs based on growing student enrollment and
the school system’s four strategic directives:
- Rededicating the focus on teaching and learning;
- Retaining, recruiting and training high quality employees;
- Developing and implementing systems and structures to support schools, ensure accountability and engage the community;
- Expanding fiscal accountability.
Approximately 82 percent of the school system’s total funding pays for employee salaries and benefits, and approximately
95 percent of the school system’s positions are school based.
The Board of Education will have work sessions in March and April and a public hearing on March 20. The board is expected
to approve the plan in late April.