Craven County Budget
Budget Services provides clear, accurate, timely, and relevant financial information and analysis to assist the School Board, Leadership Team, and other stakeholders in sound decision-making. Budget Services provides the framework for all financial decision- making through the budget process; ensures that the budget is balanced and meets division-wide needs; meets the Superintendent’s and School Board’s requirements; reflects the most accurate up-to-date information available; and presents this information to the School Board, Board of Supervisors, and community groups in a timely and transparent manner.
2018 – 2019 Craven County Schools Budget
Preparation of our Local Current Expense budget 2018-2019 continues to represent a challenge for the system. As we’ve discussed in previous budget work sessions, Craven County Schools has been dealing with loss of funding since 2009, as well as large increases in retirement and healthcare costs that directly impact dollars available to spend in areas other than salary and benefit costs. We’ve seen a ___% increase in the retirement rate since 2008, from 8.14% in 2008/2009 to ____% in 2018-2019 and a ___% increase in the cost of health care benefits from $4,157 in 2008 to $____ in 2018-2019.
In addition to these rising costs, we continue to experience declining enrollment which impacts the state funding our district receives as well as loss of Impact Aid Revenues due to a decreasing military allotment to Craven County.
Challenges in the preparation of the district's budget continues to be K-3 class size legislation, the significant salary and wage compression for our employees, and the lack of funds for curriculum and professional development resources particularly at the secondary level. The FY 2019 budget reflects continued efficiencies to fund the opportunity to recruit and retain the very best teachers which has resulted in an increase in the teacher supplement in FY 2019 to 8.5%.
In addition to looking at efficiencies in staffing, we have reduced areas of the budget where we have been able to identify savings over the past three years. We have proposed beginning a salary study for classified employees and have provided funds to begin this work during the 2018-2019 school year. The FY 2018-2019 budget reflects an increased request from the Craven County Board of Commissioners of $300,000 to provide partial funding for our increase in the teacher salary supplement. The total cost of the salary supplement is 1.1M.
By looking at these ways to improve our efficiency, we continue to maintain Art, Music and PE positions to enhance the education of the students and families we serve in Craven County. We are thankful for the support we have received from staff, parents and our Craven County Commissioners as we have tried to navigate these difficult budgetary decisions.