Durham schools to increase budget request

Attendance zone for school is set

Staff WriterApril 25, 2008 

— The school board voted late Thursday to ask county commissioners for $194,000 more than originally planned for next year. The increases would broaden after-school programs and pay for additional interpreters for non-English speaking families.

The changes bring next year's budget increase to about $7.5 million more than the schools asked of the county last year, and to a total operating budget of more than $401 million.

The rest of the $7.5 million increase is because of staff raises, rising energy costs and two other programmatic changes, school officials said.

Superintendent Carl Harris is seeking to expand the More-At-Four pre-kindergarten program by 36 students and hire four additional social workers, whose salaries will be split with the Department of Social Services.

School officials meet with county commissioners Monday, partly to discuss the budget, which will be decided in May.

In other business, the board also finalized the attendance zone for Elementary B, the yet-unnamed school scheduled to open at 2051 Northern Durham Parkway in January 2009.

The new, traditional-calendar school is being built at the Brightleaf at the Park subdivision on the south side of N.C. 98.

The school will be built for 600 students, but will open mid-year with about 330 transfers from Oak Grove Elementary School. Oak Grove is currently about 230 students over capacity.

The attendance zone for the new school bisects the current Oak Grove zone. Families living north of N.C. 98, Sherron and Holder roads will remain at Oak Grove, while families living south of those borders will be assigned to the new school.

Families who live in the new school's attendance zone will be notified of the changes through Oak Grove and by mail.

samiha.khanna@newsobserver.com or (919) 956-2468

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