BOE cuts coaching supplements by 30 percent

Published 8:16 pm Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Butler County Board of Education voted unanimously Thursday night to reduce the school district’s coaching supplements by 30 percent.

At its May meeting, the BOE voted to eliminate supplements for both coaches and staff who provide technical assistance. That move allowed the board the option to reinstate all or a portion of the supplements based on the finalized figures for the state education budget.

Due to budget shortfalls, the BOE elected not to reinstate the full amount.

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“This 30 percent is across the board for all coaches,” Butler County Schools Superintendent Darren Douthitt said. “We’re not cutting a softball coach more than a football coach. It will be the same for everyone.”

Butler County Board of Education President Linda Hamilton said she would liked to have seen a 25 percent reduction rather than the 30 percent proposed by Douthitt, but said she was willing to vote for the proposal if that was what the district’s budget could support.

Douthitt said he is working on a plan to possibly use ticket receipts from the revenue generating sports to offset some of the loss in salary the coaches will suffer as a result of the supplement reduction.

“It’s something that other districts have done, and we’re looking into,” he said. “We haven’t got a plan yet, but it’s something we will work on, and whatever we come up with we will divide the money up among all the coaches, not just the coaches of sports that generate revenue.”

This past school year, $97,215 in supplements was paid to Greenville High School employees, $48,156 was paid to McKenzie School employees and $68, 622 was paid to Georgiana School employees.

Another $25,883 in supplements was paid out to employees who helped troubleshoot technology problems. The total amount of supplements paid out was $239,876.

Other actions included:
* Recognizing the Butler County Schools Transportation Department for receiving an Excellent Report for its bus inspection. Of the 42 buses inspected only one was found to have a major deficiency for a rating of 2.4 percent, which exceeded the state average of 4 percent.

* Recognizing McKenzie School elementary teacher Patricia Cook for being inducted into Jacksonville State University’s Teacher Hall of Fame.

* Accepting a bid from Dothan’s Lewis & Associates Construction Company, Inc. for bathroom renovations at the Central Office. The $114,000 bid was $12,800 less than the next lowest bid. The renovations will divide the old boys’ bathroom in half creating men’s and women’s’ restrooms. The girls’ bathroom will be converted into a storage room. “The current restrooms were designed for students,” Assistant Superintendent Allin Whittle said. “This will be more of a business style design with fewer toilets.” The renovations are being paid for using Public School and College Authority funds that are earmarked for construction projects only, according to Hamilton.