School funding stalemate drags on in Sumner County - WKRN News 2

School funding stalemate drags on in Sumner County

Posted: Updated: Aug 8, 2012 06:04 PM CDT
GALLATIN, Tenn. -

The various sides of the Sumner County budget tussle that has kept 28,000 kids out of school since Monday show few signs of compromise Wednesday.

In a video posted on the Sumner County Schools Web site late Tuesday, schools director Del Phillips makes a seven-minute plea in support of the school board's request for an additional $7.6 million.

Phillips went over familiar territory in his video argument saying, "bottom line we have no where else to cut."

"Reducing the budget further would offset classroom teachers," the schools director continued in the video.

The Sumner County School Board plans to meet at 6 p.m. Thursday to address the latest funding offer made Monday at a raucous, jam-packed County Commission meeting.

The commission came up with an additional $2.2 million, but there is no indication the board will vote to start schools at Thursday's meeting.

Most of the commission, which funds schools, shows little appetite for a school board-suggested property tax increase.

County Commissioner Chris Hughes hopes to meet the school board halfway but he's not optimistic it will happen.
 
"My biggest fear is that they don't make any cuts, they hold what they got, and this thing could go on indefinitely and that would be the worst thing for us, the kids especially," he said.

Parent Andy Spears hopes the school board kicks the issue back to the county commission for a long-term school funding plan that would start with reallocating existing funds.

He said, "Our community is definitely going to be focused on both the board and the county commission going forward, so we don't have a crisis every year."

"Its like World War I with everyone in the trenches, digging in," said the commissioner.

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