Onslow Board of Education talks year-round school, increased parking fees at budget workshop

JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – On Wednesday, the Onslow Board of Education met to talk about new budget proposals for the upcoming school year.

Among the budget proposals was the unanimous approval by board members to transition Clyde Erwin Elementary School into a year-round school. That change won’t happen until the 2017-2018 school year, but school officials say the transition would actually end up saving taxpayer dollars due to transportation costs for students.

Research shows that year-round school offers better improvements for students overall.

“Retention is much much better, and the children’s learning is actually better, their grades improve, our testing improves,” said Suzie Ulbrich with the Onslow County School District.

A parent survey was sent out before the decision was made and about 45-percent of parents responded, with 70-percent of them being in favor of the new transition.

The board also unanimously approved to increase parking fees for students that drive to school. It’s the first time the fees were raised in over a decade.

Ulbrich said there weren’t any other program fee increases and says the board felt parking increases was the best route to take.

“We want the opportunities for our students and these other fees if you look at it have to do with art and music and health occupation and science labs and things that are really important to the district as a whole,” she said.

The current parking fee for students is $10 a year.

Starting next school year, expect to pay $25.

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