Monday night, the Macon County Board of Education held a Special Called Meeting for the purpose of discussing nearly $15 million in ESSER funding and possible employee bonuses as well as other business as needed.
Congress set aside approximately $13.2 billion of the $30.75 billion allotted to the Education Stabilization Fund through the Coronavirus Aid Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act for the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER Fund). Signed into law on March 27, 2020, the Department awarded these grants to State educational agencies (SEAs) for the purpose of providing local educational agencies (LEAs), including charter schools that are LEAs, with emergency relief funds to address the impact that COVID-19 has had, and continues to have, on elementary and secondary schools across the Nation.
After working with a community collaborative, Assistant Superintendent Josh Lynch presented a proposal to members of the Macon County Board of Education Monday night regarding use of the district’s ESSER funding.
In addition to using the ESSER funding for project-based learning across Macon County Schools as well as addressing mental health concerns within the school system, Superintendent Dr. Chris Baldwin explained the funding would be used to look add six classrooms at East Franklin Elementary School as well. Dr. Baldwin then proposed using $4.5 million in ESSER funding allocated to the district to provide employee retention bonuses for all employees within the school system.
On a motion made by Tommy Cabe and seconded by Carol Arnold, the Board unanimously approved an Employee Retention Bonus of $1500 for full-time employees and $750 for part-time employees. The bonus will be paid out in the December payroll.
In addition, on a motion made by Tommy Cabe and seconded by Carol Arnold, the Board unanimously approved to authorize Superintendent Dr. Chris Baldwin to begin the Request for Qualifications from Architects (RFQ) process for East Franklin Elementary School.