As promised last week, superintendent David Lewis on Monday night delivered a fiscal year 2015 budget to the Muscogee County School Board that includes laying off fewer school-based employees than originally announced. The board also approved hiring three principals and the lateral transfer of five more principals.
Instead of the 69 layoffs that were in the preliminary budget the board approved June 2, board members passed the $264,717,610 budget -- $5.9 million (2.2 percent) less than the fiscal year 2014 original budget -- that now requires 42 layoffs.
The budget numbers didn't change, but the layoff number did because the central office received word of more retirements and resignations, Lewis said. In fact, Lewis said after the meeting, he expects the layoffs ultimately to be even fewer, thanks to more attrition before the school year starts in August. And he continued to vow that the laid-off employees who are certified and qualified will receive the first chance to interview for open positions.