Mayor Dean Backs Metro Schools Buyout Plan

Mayor Karl Dean says he continues to talk with school officials about their budget. District officials say an increasing number of charter schools, which Dean supports, is putting a strain on their budget. Image: Blake Farmer/WPLN

Mayor Karl Dean says he continues to talk with school officials about their budget. District officials say an increasing number of charter schools, which Dean supports, is putting a strain on their budget. Image: Blake Farmer/WPLN

Metro Schools officials are already talking about next year’s budget. They are projecting a $23 million shortfall. One proposal would offer buyouts to senior staff. Mayor Karl Dean supports the idea.

In the past, Dean has recommended big funding increases to the school system. The Mayor did so again this year, but it was a smaller than the district asked for. At the time, Dean said giving Nashville kids the best education doesn’t mean an open checkbook. But he says buyouts are a good way to find savings, noting that the city recently made a similar offer to its workers.

“We’ll talk to the schools some more and see what we can come to an agreement on. But it’s a sound practice. I think they’re moving in the right direction,” Dean said in an interview with reporters last week.

More than 260 teachers, support staff, and front office workers are eligible for the buyouts. Officials estimate it would save the school system just over $2 million. They’re also looking at eliminating some teaching positions and consolidating schools. The school board’s finance committee approved the buyout plan last week. The full board votes on the proposal tomorrow night.


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