FCS Board Bulletin for May 16, 2024

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    May 16, 2024


    The Fulton County School Board met on Wednesday, May 15, 2024, for its regularly scheduled Board meeting at the South Learning Center. Following are highlights of some of the more highly discussed topics, with the full agenda available online. Other topics discussed or approved are available via BoardDocs. Summaries of Board actions can be found here and Board policy updates can be found here.  Meetings are streamed live on the FCS district homepage. Recordings will be available within 48 hours.

    Superintendent's Report

    Chief of Staff Cliff Jones provided the Superintendent's report on behalf of Dr. Mike Looney, who was attending the Every Day Counts Summit at the White House in Washington, D.C. On behalf of the superintendent, the Board and the thousands of employees at Fulton County Schools, Jones praised and thanked all the high school seniors participating in their upcoming graduation ceremonies. He acknowledged some may still be working toward earning their diploma, saying the district has summer activities available to help them finish school and achieve this goal.

    Summer Learning online registration ends May 24, with in-person registration at local sites on June 3 and 4. Middle and high school students and their parents or guardians may register through the Infinite Campus portal, and elementary students should register with their local schools.

    Mr. Jones concluded his report by recognizing this as National Police Week, thanking the FCS Police and law enforcement officers across the country for their service.

    Board Approves FY 2024-2025 Tentative Budget

    Sound financial stewardship and a strong commitment to taxpayers were paramount in the development and approval process for the Fiscal Year 2024-2025 tentative budget. At the meeting, Chief Financial Officer Marvin Dereef outlined the details in the proposal for the Board and public.

    Leading the highlights, the FY2025 tentative budget includes a 4.5% increase and a step increase for all eligible employees valued at $56 million. The budget also includes increased employer contribution costs for retirement and health care benefits. Also included is $24.4 million in funding to transition some ESSER (Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief) initiative items to the General Fund, including Instructional Coaches and Summer Learning costs. Other budget highlights noted by Mr. Dereef include opening a new school called The Promise Career Institute, closing S.L. Lewis Elementary School, and investing in a Professional Development initiative called Level Up Fulton.

    Additionally, the recommendation includes assigning funds for textbook adoptions, mostly for science, and establishing a separate fund for Risk Management items. The budget tentatively recommends a slight reduction in the millage rate to 17.13, one of the lowest rates compared to other school districts in metro Atlanta.

    General Fund - $1,422,055,825
    School Nutrition Fund - $57,085,647
    Special Revenue Fund - $92,314,586
    Capital Program Fund - $660,668,166
    Pension Fund - $42,099,757
    Student Activity Fund - $19,255,290

    The total appropriation amount for all funds is $2,293,479,271.

    Adoption of the 2024-2025 final budget is scheduled for Tuesday, June 11, 2024. All details of the tentative budget, including budgeted salary schedules, all provisos, School Allotment Guidelines, and the five-year capital program are contained in the FY25 Budget Book and can be found here. For more information about the budget process, watch Mr. Dereef's interview on "Let's Talk Schools" here.

    Policy Updates

    The Board took action on Policy IJ: Programs, Pilots, Evaluation, and Research that creates new requirements for the district and schools related to maintain an up-to-date program inventory, processes to request programmatic additions, and budgetary requirements that will be shared with the Board of Education. Cross councils and training materials for School Governance Councils will reflect these changes in alignment with the Fulton County Schools Strategic Plan.

    Staff presented the updated Student Code of Conduct for 2024-2025 for information. The current revisions have been crafted based on comprehensive input from a cross-section of our community, including feedback from parents, principals, district and school administrators, and behavioral specialists, as well as insights from an analysis of student discipline data. This year's revisions to the Code of Conduct introduce new rules, refined terminology, and enhanced guidelines, particularly for addressing harassment offenses and managing serious infractions within schools. See the Student Code of Conduct here.

    New Hires & Promotions

    The following individuals were approved for new positions at the Board meeting:

    • Karen Cooke | Principal, Heards Ferry Elementary School
    • Shawana Arnold | Principal, Renaissance Elementary School
    • Erica Fox | Director of Accelerated and Extended Programming
    • Yasmine McKenzie | Director of Applied Learning and Design


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