The Marietta school board on Tuesday will take a last look at the district’s proposed fiscal 2020 budget, which includes staff raises, before voting on its tentative approval next week.
The board will also consider the $760,840.01 purchase of 2,000 Chromebook laptops for elementary school students to use during school.
The $108 million fiscal 2020 is projected to be $4.1 million, or nearly 4%, more than last year’s and provides improved nursing and custodial services, as well as the 6.5% across-the-board staff pay increases announced last month, said Erin Franklin, the district’s chief financial officer.
The district expects to use about $3.1 million from its reserves to balance its fiscal 2020 budget, Franklin said, leaving the reserve balance at $14.1 million.
Superintendent Grant Rivera said Monday employee compensation was the district’s No. 1 priority when creating the 2020 budget, specifically a pay raise that allowed an equal increase for certified and non-certified staff.
The proposed budget also includes $125,098 for the improvement of nursing services, including the addition of a special education nurse, an increase of $91,306 for custodial services and $104,990 for a K-11 district math coach, which Franklin said complements the K-11 math curriculum adopted in March.
Three certified positions, which likely means teacher allotments, would be dissolved under the proposed 2020 budget, saving the district $286,319. Franklin said those jobs will not come as layoffs, as allotments fluctuate with enrollment each year.
Chromebooks for elementary schools
The purchase of Chromebook laptops for the district’s elementary schools are an effort to bring the district to a 1-to-1 ratio of computer-to-student in grades K-5, Rivera said.
The proposal, he said, is part of a continued effort to improve accessibility to computing resources in all of the district’s classrooms and complements the recent adoption of K-11 math curriculum. The new math materials include digital resources that all students will need to be able to access, he said.
“Our district, previously, has had a 1-to-1 initiative ... throughout the district, and that was primarily third grade and above,” Rivera said. “We wanted to purchase an additional 2,000 (laptops) to make sure we could provide 1-to-1 access for kindergarten through second grade.”
The purchase price includes 137 laptop carts, as well as logistical services, according to the agenda item. The money will come from a special 1% sales tax for education, approved by Cobb voters in 2017.
In other business, the board is expected to consider:
♦ Upgrade of intercom systems at Marietta schools through a $268,336.09 contract with SWC-Richardson;
♦ HVAC improvements at Marietta Middle School and Marietta High School through $381,830 and $824,494.50 contracts, respectively, with R.K. Redding Construction, Inc.;
♦ Renovation of Lockheed Elementary School’s STEM Innovation Lab through a $54,597.60 grant from Lockheed Martin;
♦ Visitor control and safety improvements at Marietta Middle School through a $68,434.80 contract with R.K. Redding Construction, Inc.;
♦ Testing and inspection services for the Park Street Elementary construction project through a $67,780 contract with Matrix Engineering Group, Inc.;
♦ Courtyard improvements at Marietta Sixth Grade Academy through a $64,408 contract with Old Mountain Contracting Company; and
♦ New scoreboards for the baseball and softball fields at Marietta High School, through a $58,250 contract with Electro-Mech Scoreboard Company.
The Marietta school board meets for its work session at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the district’s offices on Howard Street in Marietta.