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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Pinellas looking at $16 million in cuts

Pinellas County is far from having a full budget picture yet for the 2013/14 school year. But superintendent Mike Grego outlined about $16 million in cuts this week that he's planning to make.

We've already written about a number of the items, such as these:

$660,000 from eliminating 11 district administrative positions

$1.4 million from consolidating the special education centers

$955,000 from changing PE scheduling in elementary schools

Some of the cuts aren't cuts at all, but the shifting of items out of the operating budget and into the capital budget or to federal funding sources. Other reductions include cutting 65 teaching positions ($3.9 million) - offset somewhat by an addition of 25 teachers to meet class size ($1.5 million in the plus column) - $2.3 million from department discretionary budgets and $1 million in energy savings.

Grego told the School Board this week that he's not trying to make cuts, he's trying to use money and programs more efficiently. He wants to see a "return on investment" for programs. In some cases, that might mean an additional expense, not a cut. One small example is the change to library staffing at the high schools, which is a $38,000 increase.

[Last modified: Friday, May 3, 2013 4:03pm]


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