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Calhoun County Schools eliminates budget deficit

MT. ZION — Calhoun County Schools is no longer in deficit with its finances as reflected in the financial reports from the 2019-2020 fiscal year.

In a letter from Superintendent Kelli Whytsell, she said it was a joint effort from staff members to try and reduce as many expenses as possible.

“With the employees’ help over the last three years, we had not only reduced the deficit each year, but last year, we eliminated the deficit,” Whytsell said.

The school system was in deficit for at least four years but Whytsell was unsure exactly how long the deficit was in place.

Some of the ways the school system was able to make this happen was by only ordering custodial supplies twice a year, becoming more economical in the food service department and by bringing in a retired finance professional to look at their finances and to offer insight.

Another way this was able to happen was the 10 percent boost in the county they received from the state.

“That greatly helped us,” Whytsell said.

While the deficit was taking place, teachers didn’t receive yearly supply money but those funds have been re-established.

“This year we were able to restore the classroom supply money, change the lights in the gyms at (Calhoun Middle High School) and have increased the custodial supplies to meet the need of COVID,” she said. “We will continue to make small improvements to catch up on deferred maintenance.”

With the removal of the deficit, Whytsell said the district will be able to “provide more opportunities to our students. We are greatly relieved this is off our backs.”

Candice Black can be reached at cblack@newsandsentinel.com.

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