Public forums being held to discuss budget for Beaufort County Schools

Public forums being held to discuss budget for Beaufort County Schools

BEAUFORT, SC (WTOC) - Beaufort County taxpayers will have the chance to learn how the school board plans to spend their money for next year’s school budget.

Board members will host two public forums to discuss the preliminary budget and take comments from the public.

The salaries for faculty and staff make up the largest portion of the budget. The salaries of South Carolina teachers have been making headlines a lot lately, especially after last week’s teacher’s rally in Columbia. It was just last Wednesday when thousands of South Carolina teachers rallied at the SC Statehouse for higher pay, smaller classroom sizes, and more resources like the addition of mental health counselors in schools.

With Thursday being the last day of South Carolina’s legislative session and still no actions on education reform, it looks like the teachers’ wishes won’t be granted this year.

The Beaufort County School Board will release its preliminary budget for the next school year on Thursday, which will include teachers’ salaries. But since the state primarily funds teachers’ salaries, it is unlikely there will be any increase to those numbers.

This budget will not include any plans regarding school improvements or special capital projects. That’s because in South Carolina, the school system’s budget must relate to operational costs of the school system. All funding for major projects, like school renovations or new schools, must be found in bond referendums. And those bond referendums must be approved by voters.

Thursday’s public forum will begin at 6 p.m. at Battery Creek High School, located at 1 Blue Dolphin Dr, Beaufort, SC 29906.

A second input session will take place at 6 p.m. next Tuesday, May 14 at Bluffton High School, located at 12 H. E. McCracken Cir, Bluffton, SC 29910.

Copyright 2019 WTOC. All rights reserved.