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Superintendent Presents Proposed Budget for FY25

Frederick County Schools Superintendent Dr. George Hummer presented his proposed FY25 budget to the School Board during its meeting on January 24.  The needs-based budget proposal includes initiatives to address the budget priorities adopted by the School Board in October 2023 and support the school division’s strategic plan “Inspire 2025: A Promise for Progress.”

The Board’s budget priorities include:

  • Instructional initiatives, professional learning, and necessary supports that inspire a collective responsibility for continuing growth, address student and employee needs, and are responsive to the voices of the school community and are aligned with the proposed local staffing standards.
  • Compensation packages (salaries, benefits, other incentives and continuing education) that enable the recruitment and retention of high-quality staff.
  • Operational funding to address preservation of assets (facility maintenance), replacement of school buses, safety and environmental enhancements, and aging infrastructure/systems.

The proposed School Operating Fund budget totals $239,613,836. Dr. Hummer is seeking an additional $8 million in local funding from the Frederick County Board of Supervisors for the School Operating Fund, which supports the day-to-day operations of the school division and focuses on the needs of our students.

“It is clear that Frederick County Public Schools is successful because of its high-quality teachers, staff and leaders,” Hummer said. “In an effort to help recruit and retain outstanding teachers and staff and recognize the increased cost of living that has impacted everyone, my proposed budget includes an average 6.6 percent salary increase for teachers, 6.6 percent for classified staff, 5.0 percent for other professional staff and 3.2 percent for administrators and supervisors.”     

Dr. Hummer also proposed a multi-year initiative to uncluster the teacher pay scale. “If you look at our salary scales, you’ll see there are several levels with multiple years of experience clustered together. My proposed budget includes $1.9 million to break apart these clusters after 15 years of experience for teachers, diagnosticians, psychologists and therapists. This is the first step in a multi-year initiative,” Hummer said.

The superintendent’s proposed budget also includes $1.8 million to increase the teacher starting salary from $50,000 to $52,000 and $1.4 million in additional pay for teachers with 25 or more years experience, as part of a 3-year initiative to retain experienced teachers. Hard-to-fill positions would receive a $2,000 signing bonus across the board. 

Additionally, Dr. Hummer’s proposed budget includes increasing the daily substitute rate by $20 and increasing the bus driver attendance bonus. As part of Governor Youngkin’s proposed budget, all employees would receive a one percent one-time bonus in FY25. 

The proposed budget includes a request for 25 new positions to address the division’s most pressing instructional needs after reallocating existing positions. This is the first phase of a five-year process to implement staffing standards within the division. The standards would ensure that staffing allocations are aligned with our strategic priorities to best meet the needs of our students.

The proposed budget also includes $2.2 million for free breakfast and lunch for all students, $260,000 for two replacement buses, $100,000 for intruder locks and cameras, and $46,800 for a hybrid night school at Dowell J. Howard Center. 

An additional $2.35 million is needed from the Board of Supervisors for Debt Service in FY25. The amount requested for the FY25 Capital Projects Fund from the Frederick County Board of Supervisors is $19.8 million. The increase in the amount needed next year is higher due to lack of full funding since FY23.

“As we go through the budget process over the next few months, I encourage members of the community to stay informed and get involved,” Hummer said. “I am interested in receiving feedback on my proposal and have scheduled three town hall meetings to give school staff and members of the community an opportunity to gather additional information and pose questions about my proposed budget.” 

Get more information on the Superintendent’s Proposed FY25 Budget.