Cumberland County denies school district's request for additional $8.9 million

FAYETTTEVILLE, N.C. (WTVD) -- A budget battle is affecting students in Cumberland County. On Thursday afternoon, Cumberland County Commissioners rejected a request from Cumberland County Schools for more money.

Cumberland County Schools learned they would not be receiving the additional $8.9 million it requested for nurses, counselors and social workers. Donna Vann, Chair of Cumberland County School Board said CCS is below the state mandate for personnel per child.

"We may not have all the counselors that we need all the social workers that we need. But the people we have in place are top notch and they will continue to work as hard as they can," said Vann.

County leaders did agree to fork up an extra $919,000. About $400k will go to the nurses and counselors while about $500,000 will go toward school resource officers; an added bonus. Jeanette Council, a former educator and longtime county commissioner says the board did everything it could do to keep from cutting county priorities and raising taxes.

"I know that the schools have never-ending needs and what we have to have the public to understand is that we cannot make up on the local level, cuts that are on the state level," Council said.

Cumberland County Schools and the County will work over the summer to reach a funding agreement. For now, the school board is going back to the drawing board.

"We're going to have to look at programs we have in place and programs and or needs that might be more critical that we have in place," Vann said.
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