Pay schedule restored for several positions at 3 schools
SB budget beginning to see positive changes as part of cost-saving measures
JENNINGS — The Jeff Davis Parish School Board agreed Thursday to restore the pay schedule for three administrative assistants and two curriculum coordinator positions that were reduced as part of a $1.4 million budget cut last April.
The board voted unanimously to restore administrative assistants at Elton Elementary, Hathaway High and Jennings High schools back to the assistant principal pay schedule. Two curriculum coordinator positions were also restored back to the curriculum supervisor pay schedule.
The pay schedule changes were part of the 2016-17 phase II cuts that were initiated when the district was significantly overbudgeted, Superintendent Kirk Credeur said.
As part of the cuts, Credeur said the School Board asked the administrative assistants and curriculum coordinators at those schools to accept jobs at a lesser pay. The move was expected to save the board nearly $35,000 a year.
“They still had the responsibility and job duties, but they were accepting that job to help the district at a lower level of what other people doing the exact same job were getting,” he said.
He praised the employees for stepping up to help the district out and doing their job for less money.
Credeur said the School Board’s budget is beginning to see a positive change as part of those cost-saving measures which included cutting operating expenses by reducing personnel through attrition and reassignments and discontinuing art and music programs.
“We are getting to the point where our budget is starting to stabilize,” Credeur. “It’s still not where we would like it to be, but we wanted to correct this because they are doing the job at less money to help the district.”
As a result of the cost-saving measures put in place last year, Credeur said the current midyear budget is showing a significant improvement.
“In the last six years at the midway point we have been anywhere from $500,000 to $1 million in the red and this year at the midway point we are actually up over $220,000,” Credeur said. “So the cost-cutting measures that we took and put in place and the things that we did to try to turn the budget around and make sure that we were living within our means and doing what we had to do, have been so successful now that we are at the point where we can right some of those things.”
Credeur said the board has seen an increase in the cost of doing business, including the cost of individual teacher retirement, which has increased from 15 percent to 28 percent in the last five to six years, while faced with continued cuts at the state and federal level.
‘It’s (budget) still not where we would like it to be, but we wanted to correct this because they are doing the job at less money to help the district.’
Jeff Davis Parish