The Avenue News
BCPS Board’s 2020 budget
BALTIMORE COUNTY—The Baltimore County Public Schools total adopted budget for fiscal year 2020 is $2.13 billion; of that, $1.71 billion is the FY20 adopted operating budget.
About the budget development process
On January 8, 2019, Interim Superintendent Verletta White presented to the Board of Education a proposed FY20 budget. In her proposal, the superintendent noted that this year’s budget still has a significant request with regard to People for Our People, to provide the staffing and resources to ensure that our educators and students are successful.
The superintendent’s proposal was shaped by listening to and learning from staff, students, and community members.
As a result, the budget focus areas are: special education and English learners; literacy and mathematics; growth and infrastructure; transportation; and school climate and safety.
One shift in the teaching and learning environment is a proposed adjustment to instructional technology that will save the school system at least $15 million over the next three years.
The adjusted plan would shift to a 2:1 device ratio for Grades 1 and 2 in alignment with recommendations from the School Health Council. In addition, all elementary schools would use Chromebooks, which now meet BCPS standards for data privacy and security, due to the international General Data Protection Regulation.
Special Education and English Learners
Student enrollment in BCPS has increased for the past decade, with projections exceeding 119,000 as early as FY 2024.
To support students with severe disabilities and English learners, the system’s fastest growing student groups, the FY20 budget proposal continues to increase staffing to support students with disabilities and those learning English.
Literacy and Mathematics
The BCPS commitment to continuing to prepare students to graduate with not only a diploma, but also a resume, is clear through increased staffing and investments in successful programs that directly impact and support students from Prekindergarten through college and career readiness.
Growth and Infrastructure
The bulk of the growth and infrastructure portion of the budget is dedicated to increased compensation for BCPS staff and accommodating new students with staffing and resources for transportation, maintenance, and facilities.
This budget proposal includes an increased number of school bus attendants to address the growth in students with special needs, and to support student behavior.
School Climate and Safety
By investing in more staffing and resources to support social-emotional learning, including more school counselors, social workers, and psychologists, BCPS is cultivating warm, positive school climates where students can do their best.
These investments into high quality, responsive instruction for more than 113,000 diverse learners will continue to promote a strong, productive Baltimore County.
The budget process included a proposed budget by the Board of Education and a budget proposal from County Executive John Olszewski to the County Council, before the final budget was approved by the County Council.