Still no start date for schools in Sumner County - WKRN News 2

Still no start date for schools in Sumner County

Posted: Updated: Aug 7, 2012 05:56 AM CDT
GALLATIN, Tenn. -

School board members last week voted to delay the first day of school until a budget can be reached.

In an emergency meeting Monday night, the Sumner County Commission agreed to reallocate $2.2 million for textbooks and basic necessities but is still $5.5 million short of the more than $7 million additional requested by the school board to fund their nearly $200 million budget.

Some commissioners like Jim Vaughn previously called the board's decision to delay the school year "premature," adding, "If [the school board] had just given [the county commission] the opportunity to sit down and work through the budget, I'm sure that we could have come to some sort of resolution."

Hundreds were in attendance at Monday's meeting.  Many parents and citizens were given an opportunity to speak out publicly. Most asked the commissioners to fully fund the school budget.

The commissioners also had a chance to discuss a few options to fund the budget. A property tax increase was proposed but voted down.

Some commissioners even suggested forgoing their pay to contribute to the budget. That motion also failed.

Sumner County Director of Schools Dr. Del Phillips told Nashville's News 2 many details still need to be worked out before students can return to school.

"Right now until I get back and kind of debrief and meet tomorrow with staff and talk to the board chair, we're just really not sure at this point what will happen," he said.  "We want to get students in school just as quickly as possible but we also want to protect the classroom and try to find a long term solution to our issue."

Several school board members told Nashville's News 2 Sunday the decision to delay the school year was made in order to avoid possible layoffs or program cuts in the future.

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