Baltimore County Public Schools Superintendent S. Dallas Dance has submitted a $1.38 billion operating budget request to the Board of Education.
The request asks for a 5.5 percent increase over the fiscal year 2014 budget, according to a news release.
"Baltimore County’s schools have been served well for much of the past decade by our funding authorities." Dance said in the news release. "But as we plan for more than 5,000 new students projected for the next decade, and as we resolve to provide for them a truly 21st century learning environment, the time has come to be bold. The time has come to invest in our children once again."
The school system is seeking the increased funding to address increases in the school enrollment. Enrollment in the state’s third largest school system has gone by 4.6 percent from 2008. The additional positions would also be used to help schools cope with the nearly 60 percent increase in students eligible for free or reduced lunches and 222 percent increase in homeless students since 2002-2003.
The staff increases would include 89.5 school-based positions, 15 positions to help with special education and homeless student transportation and four more school counselors, according to the news release. It also includes staffing for the new Mays Chapel Elementary School that opens in August and start-up costs for a new elementary school planned for the northwest portion of the county.
The budget also calls for $6.8 million to address the student achievement gap with $1 million to expand pre-kindergarten and $1 million for accelerated mathematics programs.
A public hearing on the budget is scheduled for 7 p.m., Jan. 21 at West Towson Elementary School, 6914 Charles St.