Southampton reveals budget requests

Published 11:10 am Friday, March 11, 2016

Southampton County Public School Superintendent Dr. Alvera J. Parrish on Monday shared that the district will seek $30,049,018 as part of the county’s budgetary process — up 6.67 percent ($1,878,526) from the amount allocated last year. The largest portion of the additional request, totaling approximately $1.13 million, would fund the hiring of a nine teachers, two specialists, two custodians, an athletic trainer, a guidance counselor and a librarian.

“Our budget priorities remain the same,” Parrish said. “We want to continue to replace personnel to address student achievement to give our students continuous opportunities to achieve and reach that level of excellence moving forward; to address equity in the salary of teachers as compared to surrounding areas, as well as the classified staff as to how we compare to surrounding areas; to replace instructional programs that were previously cut due to the budget shortages; to provide technology resources so that we can enhance student learning; as well as address site improvements and building facility needs moving forward.”

Facility upgrades include the addition of security cameras at Riverdale Elementary, replacing the doors and floor at the Southampton Middle School gymnasium and adding a covered walkway from Capron Elementary to the mobile structures outside. This, among other smaller issues, would cost the district $150,080.

“[This presentation] is a report of our needs,” said school board vice chairman Jim Pope, who chairs the budget committee. “Hopefully, we’ll have a better idea in the very near future from the state and from our locality on where we stand. So far, we’ve received encouraging news from the state, and I’d say somewhat positive news from the locality. As always, our goal is to provide a quality education for the students of Southampton County.”

The school board will vote on the approval of the budget on Monday, March 14, as part of its regularly scheduled monthly meeting.