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Blount Co. BOE eliminates teaching positions after failed wheel tax vote

7:55 PM, Jul 23, 2013   |    comments
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(WBIR - Blount Co.) The Blount County School Board has voted on a new budget which will eliminate multiple teaching positions.

Back in June, Blount County voters rejected a $35 wheel tax that would have raised money for education.

So Tuesday evening, the Blount County Board of Education passed an amended budget of $81 million.

Twenty-four full-time positions will be cut, 21 of them being teachers. Those cuts are due to attrition; no one will be laid off.

However, 48 part-time teaching assistant positions are being cut. Twenty-eight of those are due to layoffs.

"Our teaching assistants are very active in the classroom, they're at the point of contact where teaching and learning takes place and this is going to create a hardship for our teachers that work very hard and that rely on those folks especially when we go into small groups and especially with those teachers who are dealing with struggling learners," said Rob Britt, director of schools.

Those teaching assistants will be placed on a preferred hire list. That means if a school has a TA position open up, they will be offered their job back.

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