Wake County Schools

Tata reworks budget, vows to protect teachers

Posted April 15, 2011

Wake County Public School System

— The Wake County Public School System and the state Department of Public Instruction have been bracing for a 5 percent cut in this year's state budget.

Under a state budget proposed by the House this week, schools could see a 9 percent cut.

“I think that the legislature needs to take a hard look at what we are doing and why we're doing it,” Wake County Superintendent Tony Tata said Friday.

Earlier this month, Tata released a $1.25 billion budget proposal that prioritizes teacher retention and classroom investment in the face of a projected $2 billion to $3 billion state budget shortfall next year.

Under that budget, the school district would cut 46 central services clerical positions, reduce contract months for assistant principals and reduce per-student spending by $52 next year, Tata said, while funneling additional resources toward teacher retention in under-enrolled schools and creating new technology and international studies programs in 10 schools.

"We would have to make some serious cuts to get to 9 or 10 percent," Tata said. 

Wake Superintendent Tony Tata Tata reworks Wake schools budget

Tata said he and his staff are looking for ways to rework their budget to soften the blow, but he admits deeper cuts would likely mean more school employees will be out of work.

"It's hard to imagine how we would not affect more jobs," Tata said. 

North Carolina Association of Educators lobbyist Brian Lewis estimates 7,000 teachers could lose their jobs statewide if education cuts reach 9 percent. 

"This is a blueprint for how you are going to do irreparable damage to the public school system in North Carolina," Lewis said. 

With tough decisions ahead, Tata vows he'll do all he can to protect teachers and classrooms.

“If we are getting into cutting teachers, you can rest assured that we have found no other thing to cut,” Tata said.


This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • cwmllc1952 Apr 18, 2011

    Maybe Tater can cut some more jobs that no one is presently working or even cut a job but move that person to another position so unemployment doesn't rise.
    I wonder does he overdraw his check book or does he do without when necessary ????????????

  • ecualumni1982 Apr 18, 2011

    Everybody wants to balance the budget, but nobody wants to pay more taxes, cut teachers, resources, or use birth control to limit the massive number of kids. Its kind of like taking an opinion poll on who wants to get old and die, everyone would object but its going to happen.

  • whatelseisnew Apr 15, 2011

    "I will always say, that the state legislature would save teacher's jobs "IF" the self-centered politicians truly wanted to save them."

    It is long past time to cut the cost of education. I am not interested in saving Government jobs.

  • Bring on the 4 Dollar Gas Apr 15, 2011

    He can vow all he wishes, fact is, the state budget doesn't even come close to being set before we start the year round school year here in good ole wake county, the county where it's not good enough to have just one calendar like most in this country, we apparently need 14, but once the truth is out about a 12-18% cut then those teachers will get the whack job. I'm almost positive that a local county commissioner has recently said as many as 2,000 teachers would be fired this time. Who will be accurate when this all comes to pass later this year?

    I'm not sure Tata will be the guy.

  • com_mon_sents Apr 15, 2011

    I will always say, that the state legislature would save teacher's jobs "IF" the self-centered politicians truly wanted to save them.

  • chfdcpt Apr 15, 2011

    Thanks to the last legislature that passed a biannual budget based on projected income, and we ended up with a multi billion budget defecit.

    And not just this governor, Easley did the same thing too. Since our State Constitution calls for a balanced budget, they used that excuse to raise all sort of "temporary" taxes.

  • venitapeyton Apr 15, 2011

    Tough time, no easy decisions.

  • harmstrong4 Apr 15, 2011

    What does he owe the Gov?

  • personalbias Apr 15, 2011

    Outsource HR Department and have admins take a 10% cut

  • ckblackm Apr 15, 2011

    Lawmakers should look at themselves before cutting education.