May 8, 2023
As part of our district's commitment to open and transparent communication, we share this summary of Monday's school board planning work session.
District's Tentative Budget Deemed Historic
Ann Sampson-Grimes, director of Budget & Financial Planning, shared highlights of the district's $867 million tentative budget for the 2023-24 fiscal year. Major points included spending for academics, student supports, personnel, strategic initiatives, and operations. "It's not easy to get excited about numbers, but this is truly an extraordinary budget. I'm excited about the direction it will take us," said Board Chair Tyler Murphy.
Sampson-Grimes also noted how the recent compensation study prompted increases in employee salaries. If the budget is approved at the May 22 action meeting, the 2023-24 salary schedules will include an average 6.3 percent raise for certified employees and at least a 4 percent increase for classified staff.
"This is a moment in time that is going to be epic for our teachers and staff. It's such an opportunity to invest in the people who are doing the work," said Deputy Superintendent Houston Barber.
"The investments will also move our students to the next level so they can become the best versions of themselves."
The budget, which district staff and the board developed through a transparent process over several months, represents the school board’s identified priorities and the commitment they made in February to investing in the staff of Fayette County Public Schools.
Other agenda items for the board's upcoming action meeting also deal with 2023-24 finances:
Note: These linked documents are all draft proposals and are subject to change before final board approval later this month.
In another money-related item, board member Marilyn Clark will be appointed to represent the Fayette County Board of Education on the Bluegrass Community Foundation Advisory Committee for oversight of FCPS endowed funds, residuals, and donations.
During the superintendent’s report, the board heard about this spring's results on the Measures of Academic Progress assessment, or MAP testing. "We still have a lot of work to do, and we're not shying away from that," said Meocha Williams, assistant superintendent for Academic Services. The MAP data helps the district allocate resources, including teachers. "We need to design instruction to make sure we have the highest impact on students," Williams said. Director of Assessment Brooke Stinson also spoke about the growth component of MAP, noting that most grade levels met their goals.
On the Horizon
Various staffers previewed agenda items slated for consideration at May's regular meeting and fielded questions from board members. Board approval is pending on these items:
- A contract with the Lexington Center to host our 2023 graduation ceremonies;
- A contract with Hanover Research to conduct the second phase of its review of our Technology Department, including support to schools and use of technology in the classrooms;
- A contract with Edmentum to provide online access to courses that students will be able to take for initial credit as well as credit recovery;
- A contract with CodeHS for an online teaching platform that schools use to support instruction in computer science;
- A contract with PowerSchool for a comprehensive Human Resources information system to improve efficiencies in district operations;
- A contract with Aperture Education to continue using the DESSA social-emotional learning tool to identify and evaluate students’ needs in order to provide appropriate supports and resources;
- A contract with School-Connect to purchase a social-emotional learning curriculum for students in grades 9 through 12; and
- A contract with Franklin Covey Client Sales Inc. to provide the Leader in Me curriculum, professional learning, and implementation support at Crawford Middle School.
Also on the board's plate is a revision of the district facility naming policy, which received first reading at the May 8 meeting.
Where Can I Learn More?
How School Board Meetings Work
The Fayette County Board of Education routinely meets twice a month, generally on the second and fourth Monday. The planning work session is an opportunity to receive extended presentations, review the agenda for the upcoming action meeting, and provide time for board members to ask questions and hold discussions with staff. The action meeting is when the board votes on proposals.
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