Doughery County School System Director of Curriculum Ufot Inyang tells the School Board at its annual retreat on Thursday, that change is necessary and is coming to the system's 26 schools. (March 14, 2013)
ALBANY, Ga. — The Dougherty County School Board held its annual retreat Thursday, and the most commonly heard word of the day was “change.”
During the day-long meeting, the board gathered with its two new members, a new interim superintendent, a new interim Title I programs director and a new director of curriculum.
“My goal is to move this system past just preparing students for tests,” Curriculum Director Ufot Inyang said. “Change is coming and it is coming quickly. We can’t waste any more time. Right now we are just getting by and that is unacceptable. It begins with our principals. They are the instructional leaders, no doubt about it. They need to feel they are getting support from Curriculum.
“Then we have to look at our teachers. We need to help them change or help them move out.”
Executive Director of Finance and Operations Ken Dyer then outlined the challenges the DCSS faces in Fiscal Year 2014, which begins July 1.
“Challenges, yes, we have lots of them,” Dyer said. “Enrollment and revenue have dropped every year for the past eight years.”
Looking ahead to the FY 2014 budget, Dyer said the system can expect to see increased health care and retirement costs; mandatory step increases for certified employees; permanent reclassification of federal expenditures to the general fund; increased fuel and overtime costs, and potential decreases in property tax revenues.
In anticipation of further decreases in revenue, Dyer said the system is looking at savings through school closures; elimination of the mobility policy, and reducing school start times from a three-tiered to a two-tiered system. Further savings, he said, could be achieved through a review of all positions in the DCSS; a reduction of contract days, and adjusted work days for all staff.
Interim Title I Director David Coley then told the board to expect the Georgia Department of Education’s annual Title I audit in May to be at a “level of scrutiny unlike ever before.”
“We’ve got to get out of trouble with the DOE,” Interim Superintendent Butch Mosely said. “It is crucial we rebuild our image with the state and within this community. We need to prove to folks that we are trying to do the right things in the right way.
“We have to get our arms around our finances and by that I mean look at our people. We’ve got a lot of folks just sitting around and talking right now. We’re going to look at every position in the system and bring in some outside people if the jobs are available. We need some new blood around here.”