Archived Story

State budget blamed as schools cut library aides

Published 6:06pm Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The Tallapoosa County School Board announced it would have to cut library aides for the 2014-2015 school year during Monday’s board meeting.

Tallapoosa County Schools Superintendent Joe Windle said the loss of four library aides at each of the county schools is the result of lost funding.

“At the beginning of last school year, we lost the funding for all library aides across the state of Alabama. That was due to the funding of scholarships under the Alabama Accountability Act for students to attend private schools,” Windle said. “That was a $40 million cost to education funding. Our share of that cost as a system was $268,000. That’s what it cost us. Most systems eliminated library aides last year. We did not.

“If we don’t receive funding from the state for positions in schools, we cannot afford at this point in time to pay that out of local money.”

During the meeting, the board also approved a resolution authorizing the issuance of the bond for $550,000 principle amount to help fund the new central office.

That funding, provided by the Tallapoosa County Commission, provided for the building of the new school board office and will fund the utilities for the building over the next 10 years.

“As a part of our agreement with the commissioners when we moved out of the courthouse was that they would provide us with $40,000 a year for 10 years to build a new facility, plus $150,000 that built this building and will pay the utilities over the next ten years.” Windle said. “The money comes from the commission.”

The commitment letter for funding the new building was voted on at the March 2013 board meeting.

After gathering input from the system’s principals and from parents, the board approved a new student dress code.

Windle said the new dress code is aimed at addressing parent concerns and making the code easier to understand and enforce.

“This dress code has been a point of contention every year regardless of who was the superintendent,” Windle said. “We brought all of the principals and comes from the commission.”

The commitment letter for funding the new building was voted on at the March 2013 board meeting.

After gathering input from the system’s principals and from parents, the board approved a new student dress code.

Windle said the new dress code is aimed at addressing parent concerns and making the code easier to understand and enforce.

“This dress code has been a point of contention every year regardless of who was the superintendent,” Windle said. “We brought all of the principals and all of the staff members in the central office together two weeks ago and spent four hours locked in this room going over this dress code item by item, word by word to ensure we all knew what we were saying and that it was an enforceable dress code.”

Windle added the new dress code got away from confusing details such as type of material students can wear in order to help better convey what is proper attire for students and teachers.

“We started from the premise of does this impact learning in the classroom, and if it doesn’t and it’s not a safety issue, then why should we be overly concerned about it,” Windle said.

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