Moore County Schools: Boy, are we getting SCREWED.

Granted, this story is about one of North Carolina’s 100 counties.  But something like this is likely going on in each of the other 99.  

We’ve got a clueless, or complicit — not sure which is worse — board of education.  We’ve got a load of edu-crats who are perpetually boo-hooing about being cash-starved and the kids suffering.  We just went through a round of this — led by our local newspaper and our Machiavellian superintendent.  The county commissioners got bullied into actually considering a tax increase to dump more money into our very own public education money pit.

We posted earlier about our discovery of a SECOND central administrative office and all of the top-level administrators pulling down six figures while teachers struggle for supplies for their students and to make car payments.

Here at The Haymaker, we soooooo enjoy exposing the duplicity of governmental types.  (We especially enjoy doing it with their own documents.) 

TOP-HEAVY.  Through fiscal year 2016, Moore County Schools reported having 2773 total employees.  Of that total, 1556 were “central services” — fancy talk for high-paid, paper-pushing administrative, non-teaching types — and 1217 were “school and school based support.”  Translation?  Only 44 percent of the people on the school system payroll in FY 2016 actually had jobs that put them in regular contact with the kids.  

EXPENSIVE KIDS.  According to this internal document, the system had a net gain of 513 students between 2007 and 2016.  During that period, operating expenditures grew by SIXTEEN MILLION DOLLARS.

Um, WHAT?  In our last post, we told you about how the system was paying 67 employees based at The Pinckney Academy some big administrator type dollars.  Got that?  SIXTY-SEVEN employees.  According to this document, there are only ELEVEN students enrolled at Pinckney.  ELEVEN.  It has a capacity for 100.  (And it contains a total of 11,807 square feet.)

Oh, the hits keep coming.  We’ve got EIGHT people fighting over TWO seats on The Pinehurst Village Council.  That’s great, but we’ve got a mess at the county school system that NEEDS that same passion directed at it.

We need a real audit of school finances.  Not the cheesy audit of financial statements the Grimesey fan club likes to toss around.  Those merely make sure the figures are all filed in the right line items.  We need a thorough investigation to see that dollars EARMARKED FOR X are actually being used to PAY FOR X.

EVERY INCUMBENT ON THE BOARD OF EDUCATION NEEDS TO BE TOSSED. They have failed in their responsibilities to the taxpayers, and to the kids.  There also needs to be a thorough house-cleaning / re-education effort at BOTH central offices.  Some bureaucrats and some politicians need to be reminded what the real mission is.



16 thoughts on “Moore County Schools: Boy, are we getting SCREWED.

  1. Let’s not assume that just because a course is earmarked and funded, we need to look deeper.

    Even more to the point, need an audit of WHAT is being taught, WHY it is being taught, in what PRIORITY is is being taught, and at WHAT cost. At some point, when you’ve wracked and stacked the curriculum THEN you take a look at the costs. At some point down the list, some things just don’t get financed, because they (and the people currently justified by then) will not longer be needed.

  2. I wish we had a respectable, credible weekly instead of the Pilot which misses half the news in Moore County (especially crime) and fails to report on other negative issues especially those concerning paid advertisers. We need a good news source in Moore County. It’s school news is skewed beyond belief.

  3. The military-industrial complex has nothing on the educrat class. I am actually truly stunned at that split of administrative being 57% of the employees. I always knew the schools were too top heavy, but that percentage is beyond what I could have ever imagined. And even worse is that the school based support probably includes the janitors, receptionists, and other jobs that do not deal with the kid’s actual education. No wonder education is in such dire straits.

  4. I’m a former educator from California and have formed a educational support committee for Moore County schools. Together that committee has 150 years of educational experience. We know of what you say in this article and agree with most of it.. We do question the wholesale dump of the school board. The “upside dowdiness” of school finance is, as we have observed is a creeping disaster that forces competitiveness with respect to teacher income to fall below surrounding states. The end result is clear. If you don’t compete you get the bottom of the academic pile in classroom teachers. Our goal and we intend to do what it takes to keep it is to remain competitive with surrounding states. We stand ready to assist in any investigation of school finances to achieve that goal!

  5. Y’all should look into Hoke County Schools and Hoke County Government. you think Moore County is bad.

  6. What you have reported on in Moore County happens in EVERY county in NC. School Boards are expected to be the cheering section for the administration, nothing more. The few board members that actually try to do their jobs are cast as trouble makers.

  7. Please Mr. Haymaker go to the “second central office”, look at the individual salaries and who those people are. Pinckney is not the central office. This info you have has been disputed again and again and takes nothing more than a few calls and visits to verify (refute). You’ve got bad info. You’re doing the same disservice to your readers you blast The Pilot for in reporting it without vetting it.
    The real story lies in Raleigh with Senator Tillman and Rep. Boles and McNeill who continue to favor vouchers, for-profit charters (follow THAT money), lottery mis-distribution, and who vote against dollars for Moore based on the tier system again and again. Who are THEY representing?

  8. I’m not sure what “butt-hurt” is and I’m no insider. This is what my own research showed:

    • Pinckney Academy is the county’s alternative middle and high school with 75 students. It is housed on the campus of the Central office annex, aka the “Ed Center” The school itself has 17 employees – 8 teachers, 1 principal, 1 bookkeeper, 5 student services staff, and 2 support staff (Pinckney staff details The other 49 staff referred to are the employees of the “Ed center” – many federally and state required for transparency and accountability mandates. This is the central office departments of child nutrition, exceptional children, curriculum and instruction, technology, instructional coaches, planning- accountability-research, school-improvement-planning-and-research.

    1. Again, school system documents show there are only ELEVEN students. SIXTY-SEVEN salaried employees all classified as “offsite central office.”

  9. It never ceases to amaze me that every time you write an article about our school system here in Moore County, you go straight for the throats of our School Board, Dr. Grinesay, and school advocates, but you give a pass to Rep. Jamie Boles, Rep. Allen McNeill, Senator Jerry Tillman, and the rest of the NCGA, who are the ones who caused the problem in the first place.

    I could provide you with facts and figures (especially on Pickney) but I see you have already been provided with that FACTUAL information, but you dismiss it because it doesn’t fit your narrative of an out of control school board and superintendent.

    The plain truth is that if you are concerned about the “waste” spent on administrative positions, you should take a look at the mandates from the NCGA which require those positions to implement.

    Then again, that would take some time to research and truly educate yourself. Why bother to do that when it is so much easier to aim your snark and your juvenile name calling at the board, the superintendent, and the members of the community who disagree with you. The school budget is a public document. The NCGA’s budget and mandates for public schools are also public. I have no patience for those who mindlessly complain without having bothered to do any research. You have taken an incorrect and out of date document and used it to weave the story you want to tell.

    One other thing, I know you think your use of snark makes you seem more intelligent, but in reality it makes you look extremely childish. Using terms like “butt-hurt” may get you a couple of chuckles from your readers, but in reality, it calls into question your ability to have a discussion without resorting to name calling. You call those who disagree with you nasty names as if you are a 10 year old bully on a playground. It doesn’t make you look smart, it makes you look small.

    1. You apparently haven’t been reading. Boles has been lambasted here for not standing up to David Lewis for hijacking our sales tax and lottery money. Tillman got dinged for his tier funding bill. You’re the one playing fast and loose with the facts.

      It’s interesting to see the hysteria generated by releasing internal school system documents to the public. The data on those documents was through 2016 so they can’t be THAT out of date.

      The public has been given the mushroom treatment by the school system, the school board, and The Pilot for far too long.

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