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Brabrand Seeks 4.3 Percent Increase for Fairfax County School Budget
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Brabrand Seeks 4.3 Percent Increase for Fairfax County School Budget

FEA Responds to FCPS Proposed Budget

The following statement was issued by the Fairfax Education Association following the release of the superintendent's budget proposal:

The Fairfax Education Association (FEA) supports the concepts presented in the proposed Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) budget.

The Fairfax Education Association has composed a set of suggestions, our Proposal to Improve Public Education in Fairfax, which we have submitted to the administration of FCPS as well as the School Board.

The Proposal to Improve Public Education in Fairfax County can be found at http://fairfaxea.org/plan/. The proposal includes suggestions toward addressing overcrowding, professional autonomy, salaries, hiring practices, staffing, facilities, and schedules among other significant issues which could positively impact the overall FCPS climate.

Finally, FEA remains concerned that this budget does not address the troubling move on behalf of FCPS to truncate the potential salary advancement of our longest serving Instructional assistants and teachers with bachelor’s degrees, nor does it promise to provide all FCPS employees a living wage. If we want to retain great educators as well as recruit new ones, we must honor the promises which were made to our most veteran staff.

The following statement was released by Fairfax County Public Schools:

Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) Superintendent Scott S. Brabrand presented a $2.9 billion Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 Proposed Budget, with a focus on employee compensation, to the Fairfax County School Board at its business meeting on Jan. 11.

The FY 2019 Proposed Budget represents an increase of $118.7 million, or 4.3 percent, over the FY 2018 Approved Budget.

“Our focus remains on achieving success for each of the more than 189,000 students in Fairfax County Public Schools,” said Brabrand. “This is why 86 percent of our budget is allocated towards instruction and my number one priority for this budget is ensuring we have the best possible teacher in every classroom.

“This budget continues to support our multi-year effort to improve compensation for teachers,” said Brabrand. “By dedicating an additional $53.1 million to accelerate the enhancement of our teacher salary scales and align salaries more closely to the market average, we can take another step toward making FCPS competitive in the teacher job market. Great teachers are a hallmark of this school district, and we need to ensure that they will remain a part of the FCPS family.”

The proposed budget includes $43.9 million for a step increase for eligible employees, and $17.9 million for the implementation of nonteacher scales (school-based administrators, clerical, custodians, psychologists, social workers, and central office personnel), to better align FCPS support pay with the market. The FY 2019 budget also includes $13.4 million for anticipated increases in health insurance.

“Since becoming superintendent in July, I have made it a priority to visit as many schools as possible,” he said. “It is exciting and rewarding to watch our students and teachers at work. They are eager to share their efforts and successes with me, which reaffirms our dedication to keeping the focus on the students, the teachers, and the classroom.”

The FY 2019 budget also includes $15.8 million for enrollment growth and changes in student demographics.

The presentation of the FY 2019 Proposed Budget is the starting point of the budget process, which ends in May with the School Board’s adoption of the Approved Budget. FCPS FY 2019 begins July 1.

The Fairfax County School Board will hold a work session on Monday, Jan. 22, and public hearings on the FY 2019 budget on Monday, Jan. 29 (and Jan. 30 and 31, if needed). An additional budget work session is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 1.

The School Board will adopt its Advertised Budget on Feb. 8 and present to the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, April 10.

Information about speaking at a budget public hearing and a list of relevant budget dates, along with updates and budget news, is available at www.fcps.edu/about-fcps/budget/fy2019.