The consolidation of schools in Aberdeen and Southern Pines will result in a cut in costs. Two schools in each of the communities will merge into one over the next two fiscal years.  Particulars regarding savings were reviewed at the Monday, January 6 work session of the Moore County School Board.

It was shown the savings will result from not having to duplicate services and from having more efficient operations at the new facilities.

The Aberdeen primary and elementary schools will consolidate this coming fall, bringing a savings of $300,000, while Southern Pines schools will merge during the 2020-21 fiscal year. Due to the delayed opening of Southern Pines Elementary, expected savings of $440,000 will be deferred for one year.

As officials noted previously, the school district will incur costs for the time between the certification of a new building for occupancy and the actual arrival of students. Among pre-opening costs are utilities, supplies, maintenance inspection, waste collection, Internet connections, phones, and compensating clerical and custodial staff.

Aberdeen Elementary is scheduled to be completed March 1. Onetime pre-opening costs will be $132,000 for the balance of the 2019-20 academic year. According to the agenda, requested funds have yet to be provided.

For the 2020-21 fiscal year, $157,000 will be needed for pre-opening costs for the new Southern Pines Elementary and the new Pinehurst Elementary schools. Southern Pines Elementary carries a onetime cost of $102,000 in pre-opening expenses. With the new Pinehurst Elementary, $55,000 will be needed for pre-opening costs.

According to projections, student membership in the district will increase to 12,860 for the 2020-21 academic year. The increase marks a jump of .48 percent over the current year. Official membership on Day 20 of this year was 12,798. Residents are reminded the numbers represent preliminary projections.

As far as teacher allotments for next year, it’s projected that six additional teachers, overall, will have to be budgeted for. With K-3, eight more teachers are needed. For grades 4-5, no increase in teaching personnel is expected. One more teacher, for 9-12, will be necessary. 

Four teaching additions will be needed for (grades) 6-8. 

Seven of the new hires will be funded via HB90. 

~Written by Sandhills Sentinel Reporter Dave Lukow.

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